Fast Facts

Governor’s Task Force Rulemaking Fast Facts

On August 4th, 2014, Governor John Hickenlooper announced the formation of an oil and gas development task force, which was established through Executive Order in September 2014. The Task Force was comprised of 21 members representing local government, civic organizations, environmental interests, agriculture, and affected industries. It convened monthly from September 2014 through February 2015. At the final meeting, the Task Force put forth 9 recommendations, 7 of which were approved unanimously. Two of the recommendations, numbers 17 and 20, which were unanimously approved, require a formal rulemaking of the Colorado Oil and Gas Cons ... Read More »

Fast Facts: Air Quality Regulation

On February 23, 2014, at the conclusion of a five-day public hearing, Colorado’s Air Quality Control Commission (AQCC) voted 8-1 to adopt new air rules for the oil and gas industry. These regulations fully adopt federal regulations (EPA’s NSPS OOOO) and add controls and strategies to reduce fugitive Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) and hydrocarbon emissions from condensate tanks and other sources. This includes installation of emission control devices and implementation of leak detection and repair programs. The new regulations will become effective in Spring 2014. Read More »

Fast Facts: The Niobrara

The Niobrara formation is roughly 82-87 Million years old, and was formed in the Upper Cretaceous period of the Mesozoic era. The formation is composed of two structural units: Smoky Hill Chalk which overlies the Fort Hays Limestone. While the Niobrara formation extends from Canada to New Mexico, only certain parts of the formation are capable of producing oil and natural gas. Currently, the most productive zones are in the Denver-Julesberg basin of northeast Colorado and southeastern Wyoming. Exploration activities in Colorado are occurring around the state, including the northwestern county of Rio Moffatt, the Piceance Basin, and southea ... Read More »

Fast Facts: Produced Water

Based on a ruling of the Colorado Supreme Court in April 2009, the Colorado State Engineer's Office (SEO) was tasked with regulating coal-bed methane wells under the Colorado Ground Water Management Act and the Water Right Determination and Administration Act. By Colorado law, all groundwater is presumed to be tributary unless proven otherwise. (1) The Produced Nontributary Ground Water Rules were created to identify areas within Colorado where the SEO would regard produced water as nontributary. Read More »

Fast Facts: Cornell Study on Hydraulic Fracturing

A study from Cornell University suggests that natural gas production climate benefits have been vastly overstated, largely due to the method of extraction known as hydraulic fracturing (HF).1 At issue is the amount of methane – a greenhouse gas (GHG) – released in to the atmosphere and whether this amount is significant enough to curtail the benefits of natural gas over other fossil fuels such as coal. Author of the study, Professor Robert Howarth claims: “Compared to coal, the footprint of shale gas is at least 20 percent greater and perhaps more than twice as great on the 20-year horizon.” This has yielded significant skepticism ... Read More »