The 14-page draft of new regulations says flow lines that are permanently taken out of service must be disconnected, drained and sealed at both ends, and any above-ground portion must be removed.
More than 400 of Colorado's oil and gas pipelines within 1,000 feet of occupied buildings failed inspections. The location of these pipelines is unknown at this time.
Colorado's oil and gas regulators have released an outline of possible new standards for designing, testing and permanently shutting down flow lines.
The moves four months after investigators linked an improperly abandoned oil and gas flowline to a home explosion that killed two people and injured one in Firestone.
Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission chief Matt Lepore said the move follows an April 17 explosion at a home in Firestone.
Local governments are exploring what new levels of control they can exert without running afoul of state law.
The company has voluntarily capped and abandoned all of its 1-inch flowlines on vertical wells in the Weld County area.
Colorado's top regulator says as long as the rules are followed, “there’s very little risk, very little potential harm of having empty, abandoned, plugged, capped lines in the subsurface.”
Cities along the Front Range are growing rapidly and the state’s 54,332 oil and gas wells aren't going anywhere.
Anadarko believes the wells are safe but is shutting them down because of the "special circumstances and sensitivity surrounding this equipment."