Battlement Mesa Drilling Plan Draws Fresh Garfield Officials’ Scrutiny

Garfield County commissioners are evaluating a potential oil and gas development in Battlement Mesa that has stirred controversy due to how close it would be to a patch of homes.

The Daily Sentinel reports Tuesday that Garfield County's Planning Commission initially approved Ursa Resources' second-phase well development, passing the proposal to commissioners for final consideration.

Ursa's plan involves drilling 55 wells from two pads, along with a wastewater injection well, pipelines and a temporary water storage facility in the unincorporated community of several thousand residents.

CPR News reported in February that residents in Triple Creek and Battlement Mesa have filed dozens of formal complaints about the oil and gas development plans in their neighborhoods. They worry about their property values, drinking water contamination and air pollution.

Now, activists also fear the injection well could cause earthquakes, while Ursa states it's safe. The company already is in the process of drilling more than 50 wells from two pads in a first phase of development.