An EnCana crew noticed irregularities while completing a well south of Silt, Colorado, including a drop in the level of cement they had placed between the well casing and the borehole wall. Intended to seal this annular space to keep gas from rising toward the surface, the cement drop meant that somewhere, several thousand feet below the surface a fracture was receiving cement, and possibly other fluids.
Shortly thereafter, neighbors were shocked to observe the creek on their property bubbling. Eventually they were able to convince the regulators to investigate and EnCana was fined.
I hope the Denton City Council will read this story. They sure need to because last Monday the Denton task force voted 3 to 2 against exploring the feasibility of well bore integrity requirements. It was industry influence that squelched that idea. I’ve already given the Denton council information about well bore problems but there are some additional examples in this story about industry influence.
They did state that several water wells were contaminated-one so heavily that it presented an explosive hazard-and that about 100 gas wells had been improperly constructed, in contravention of the COGCC well construction regulations.
Click over to EARTHblog and read A case study in how industry influence squelches the science of gas drilling impacts