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.
Colorado Oil and Gas Association (COGA)
Colorado's oil and gas regulators have released an outline of possible new standards for designing, testing and permanently shutting down flow lines.
Local governments are exploring what new levels of control they can exert without running afoul of state law.
The figures come from energy company reports ordered by the state after a fatal house explosion in Weld County was blamed on a severed gas line.
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.”
“We are very saddened by the events in Colorado," Anadarko president and CEO Al Walker told shareholders. “We are going to work very hard to understand it better.”
In 2012, 7.65 percent of proposed facilities had eight or more wells. In 2016, the share jumped to 43 percent.
The council voted 5-4 to push the vote on Broomfield's proposed moratorium and resume the meeting on Feb. 28.
The Supreme Court called the cities' limits "invalid and unenforceable" because state law trumps the local ordinances.
Longmont passed an outright ban on fracking in 2012. Fort Collins voters passed a moratorium one year later in 2013. Both could be struck down.