Mineral Wells (Parker County) Texas and Flawed Gas Injection Waste Well PermitSomervell County Salon-Glen Rose, Rainbow, Nemo, Glass....Texas


Mineral Wells (Parker County) Texas and Flawed Gas Injection Waste Well Permit

13 September 2006 at 6:29:41 AM

Saw this via Bill Gordon's No Taxpayer Left Behind (Erath County) -The Mineral Wells city personnel were not notified, as they were supposed to have been, about a gas injection well going into city limits. Actually the permit, from Majestic, was not correct, because it said the well was going in 5 miles east of Mineral Wells. How'd the city find out? Because a city resident working in the petroleum industry told them!

Since the 1930s, oil and gas production companies have injected saltwater [brine] by-products back into the underground strata. According to an Oklahoma Academy of Sciences [University of Oklahoma] estimate, about 1.2 billion gallons of brine are injected into the subsurface each day across the U.S. – mostly in Texas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Kansas, Alaska, California and Wyoming.
Area producers require saltwater disposal sites for the thriving North Texas natural gas play. Texas Environmental Profiles estimates there are about 8,000 SWD wells in the state. TRC issues permits for all SWD sites. They are generally considered no threat to much shallower underground fresh water reservoirs if constructed and maintained properly, but some environmental groups don’t agree.
However, city officials’ more immediate concerns are what happens above ground. Some say the disposal site will attract 150 to 200 tanker trucks daily to the east side of the city, damaging roads and causing traffic congestion. In addition to Brazos River Factory Stores, a church and two retail businesses are located adjacent to the proposed SWD site.
Based on current zoning ordinances, drilling and waste disposal are not permitted uses at the proposed site, so a certificate of occupancy would not be granted without a specific ordinance amendment passed by city council vote.

It's of interest to note, from the article, that Majestic isn't answering the city's questions. Bill Gordon:

There is another problem with this well – it is inside the city limits even though Majestic stated on their application it was five miles east of Mineral Wells. I called the mineral Wells City Manager, Lance Howerton, to verify the story. The RRC told him he could file a complaint that would result in the permit being withdrawn but if he did, Majestic Consulting could amend the location and re-submit their application. The RRC is allowed by Texas law to “terminate” the permit if fraudulent information is submitted on the application and they chose not to. My dictionary defines “terminate” as coming to an end – not revising or amending.

Also note that Mr. Gordon found that the cement to be used for the well... was inadequate. Why does this matter? Because if there's not enough cement, you could have leakage and contamination.

Incidentally, I have told him a couple of times and want to repeat it here. When I was first learning, very recently, about the problems with gas waste injection wells, and had asked a few questions about it to Bill, he replied "How many injection wells are in Somervell County?". I was a little dumbfounded as it hadn't really occurred to me that there would be ANY here. And, as you know if you're reading, in fact there are 4, with 1 additional contested, and another just listed requesting a permit.

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