Category Archives: COGCC

Larimer County manager sends message to COGCC about Prospect Energy

Today the Larimer Alliance learned that the Larimer County Community Director sent a letter to the COGCC regarding Prospect Energy, requesting that Prospect submit a Form 2A (location application for oil and gas operations) because the recompletions (redrilling the wells to a different formation) of 3 wells Prospect applied for last year are considered to be a significant change to the current operations. Prospect had originally applied only for drilling permits to drill to a different formation for the 3 existing wells.

A letter was also sent to Prospect Energy asking Prospect to comply with County oil and gas regulations.

The two letters are attached to this post.

The 41 page letter to the COGCC begins by stressing the proximity of the Prospect wells to residences (290 feet to the closest, and 22 homes within 1,000 feet), how this is in an Urban Mitigation Area, and is a “disproportionately impacted community”…and goes on from there, requesting the COGCC grant the request for a “Form 2A” review. The upshot seems to be, if granted, this will result in a delay and extra cost to Prospect…but a greater emphasis on proceeding safely, thereby increasing the chances that residents are not going to get exposed to more harmful pollution from unsafe operations — which Prospect has been known to do in the recent past.



Former State Senator Mike Foote Releases Report on Less Than Effective Implementation of SB19-181


We received the communication below from our friends at the Sierra Club, and if you detect a note of sarcasm in the subject line of this message, it is intentional. Former State Senator Mike Foote was one of the principal authors of Senate Bill 19-181, which was to change the mission of the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission. The report he has issued is damning to say the least. We will attach the document to this note, and we will post it on our blog as well. This is not encouraging, but we are aware there are members of the State Legislature that are looking to improve this situation. The message from Sierra Club incudes a link to their press release and to the report document as well. We have work to do, people. . . 

Hi folks,

 As you might know, former Senator Mike Foote was a prime sponsor of SB19-181, which changed the mission of the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission from one of fostering production to protecting the health, safety, welfare of people and biological resources and the environment.   

Last week, Foote released a report that, in a thorough analysis of the COGCC’s activities during the last year, compares SB19-181’s original intent to its implementation.  He concludes that, so far, the agency’s actions are not consistent with the requirements of SB19-181 to protect health, safety, the environment, and wildlife.  

Please find the report, “COGCC One Year After Mission Change” attached, and Sierra Club’s press release.

 Thank you,

photo Alexis SchwartzPolitical OrganizerPronouns: She/Her/Hers1536 Wynkoop Street, Suite 200Denver, CO 80202850-766-6320 (c)[email protected]

my comment to cogcc financial assurances rulemaking hearing january 20, 2022

Good evening, Commissioners

My name is Edward Behan, and I am a resident of Fort Collins, Colorado. I am here to express my concern about proposals for financial assurance requirements to be exercised on oil and gas operations in Colorado.

I think it is very important to require sufficient bonding from an oil and gas operator to cover the costs of plugging a well at the end of its service life, and to restore the land upon which it was operated. This is a concern to me whether it is a new drilling operation, or if a company is taking over an existing site for further exploitation. I am also seriously concerned about those wells that are simply abandoned by some operators if they have financial difficulties. It is clear that some outfits are more meticulous about their responsibility for these costs than others. It is not right that the State of Colorado and its taxpayers should pick up the bill for reclaiming any drilling site that has been abandoned without proper closure and restoration. Nor would that be fair to any operator who does execute their final operations responsibly.

Before my wife and I moved back to Colorado in 2016, we lived for fifteen years in the Gulf Coast region of Texas and Louisiana. The last eight years in Baton Rouge were particularly instructive. We were there at the time of the BP oil spill, and in the aftermath of that tragic accident, there was much discussion about other elements of how the industry had been acting in that area for decades. Plugged and abandoned wells both onshore and offshore, that were supposedly sealed, were leaking. Pipeline tracks and canals that had serviced the drilling operations throughout Louisiana’s fragile wetlands had never been restored to their original condition, and that damage has contributed to the loss of coastal wetlands. The regulatory agencies and the legislature seemingly had no interest in holding the oil companies to the requirements of the agreements that they had signed regarding restoration of the land.

Colorado has a different sort of environment, but one that is equally fragile. The effects of improperly closed out drilling sites will have impact on our air and water quality. The Commission has a unique and weighty responsibility in this, especially under your newer mandate to protect the health, safety and environment in supervising the oil and gas industry.

 I ask that you pay attention to those calling for full cost bonding of individual wells. Those costs may vary, but they need to be calculated to ensure that we taxpayers are not subsidizing their operations, and that proper care is taken of our precious Western environment. Thank you.