April 4, 2008

New Oil and Gas Rules Promise Cleaner Air

While the oil and gas industry is critical of a package of new proposed rules that will help balance the needs of drilling with the health of local communities in Colorado, we're pretty excited that the proposed rules will lead to cleaner, safer air throughout the state.

Among other things, the rules would reduce foul odor emissions in western Colorado, would limit air pollution when oil and gas wells are being drilled and completed, and would require companies to use low to zero emitting controllers (called pneumatic devices).

We have to say though, the word "rule" is not quite right. Really, these new "rules" set standards of doing it right. Already, a number of companies in Colorado are meeting these standards. BP, for example, is already using green completions to reduce harmful air pollution in southwestern Colorado. EnCana oil and gas is also on a clean air rampage in the Denver metro area, replacing and retrofitting a number of its polluting equipment with low to zero emission devices to help reduce harmful ozone pollution.

Doing it right means reducing air pollution, and that's exactly what these new rules do. Not only that, but these new rules promise to help industry make more money. Williams Production, for example, makes around $9.00 for every $1.00 it spends on green completions in western Colorado.

Really, this isn't about "rules," its about doing business responsibly in Colorado. And from the standpoint of clean air, these rules are a big step forward toward responsible oil and gas drilling.

For more information on these proposed rules, visit the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission's website.

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