Waste Injection Well in Bosque Co, Tx-Residents Vow to FIGHT it-and Court Restricts Road AccessSomervell County Salon-Glen Rose, Rainbow, Nemo, Glass....Texas


Waste Injection Well in Bosque Co, Tx-Residents Vow to FIGHT it-and Court Restricts Road Access

22 March 2007 at 11:26:08 AM

Saw this in the Clifton paper and looks like it refers to the gas waste injection well near Kopperl. (See video in the left sidebar of a number of video related to gas waste injection wells.

In a called meeting on Thursday, County Commissioners adopted a pair of ordinances setting tight restrictions on industrial facility motor vehicle traffic, in anticipation of a proposed saltwater injection well being constructed near CR 1191 and Battle Creek.

Strong objections from area citizens prompted Commissioners to work with County Attorney David Christian and attorney Keith Bradley — representing Dena (Burns) Day — in creating an ordinance that could provide Commissioners a measure of control over what citizens are describing as a "horrible violation and risk to the community."

The waste injection well, currently approved by the Texas Railroad Commission for drilling and not injection, is located on the property of Larry Reynolds. He purchased the property from Inez Burns a few months ago and has now leased the land for drilling.

The drilling company, WEC, Inc. of Granbury, has already begun drilling on-site.

A significant problem with the proposed well, according to attorney Bradley, is the lack of information surrounding an abandoned 1920s-era well.

According to information obtained through more than 60 hours of research, Bradley explained to Commissioners that there is simply no way of knowing what dropping 140 quarts of explosives down a well-hole in the 1920s did to the ground. Fracturing may or may not have occurred.

In Railroad Commission records, Bradley found a statement of the condition of the well after "shooting" that read: "shot made a little showing of oil."

The "shot," in this case, is 140 quarts of explosives — presumably TNT — that is lowered to a "sand substance" area down the hole and then shot off. This technique, a torpedo shot, is meant to fracture the strata where the blast is set.

The method of determining the area to blast in the 1920s was by examining the contents of what was being extracted from a hole a different depths.

The abandoned well is located .31 miles from the new drill site.

Further speculation about the current state of the plugged, abandoned well is whether the casing was pulled. Records do not indicate that it was, but Burns family members recall the removal of the casing pipe from the well.

Pictures exist of members of the family, still living, standing next to the well. One member of the family recalls that her father had to back-fill the site of the well after it was abandoned, asking the question of whether the torpedo shot may have caused significant fracturing or possibly a cave-in of sorts.

Information that can be found in the original well records are depths penetrated. Combining that information with the depth listed on the current well permit, it can be determined that there is a 4.200 "injection zone" open to receive waste products.

These early measurements also make clear the proximity of the injection zone to the Barnett Shale as being within 300 feet — Barnett Shale is the largest onshore natural gas field in the United States. The field is proven to have 2.1 trillion cubic feet (59 km³) of natural gas, and is widely estimated to contain as much as 30 trillion cubic feet of natural gas resources. Oil has also been found in lesser quantities, but sufficient (with recent high oil prices) to be commercially viable.

Disposal wells must be demonstrated to meet strict regulatory requirements regarding the migration of the injected fluids. Local officials questioned how that burden of proof could be met.

"The concerns now should be the safety of our children on the roads and their health," said Christian. "We need to go forward."

Judge Word, who I've video clipped before for the Bosque County resolution AGAINST the Trans Texas Corridor, said limiting truck traffic will hit the operators where it hurts.

County Judge Cole Word pointed out that according to his estimations, one truck every 10 minutes is the necessary traffic to make a well economically feasible.

The average daily injection volume of an injection well is 25,000 barrels per day. Trucks can carry 160 barrels and the cost of disposal per barrel is $1, allowing for a potential gain of $25,000 per day.

"If we limit the number of trucks that can get to the well, we hit where it hurts," said Judge Word. "If they can’t make any money, it’s no good for them."

With the new ordinance, the limit on trucks at 25 per 24-hours will reduce potential profits from $25,000 to $4,000.

I also note that Bosque County is doing the same thing Judge Maynard in Somervell County is proposing to do, that is, object to the permitting of the injection well. And don't forget, even if you don't live RIGHT BY THE WELL, send in your protest letters the first instant you see this in the paper.

Bradley reminded the Commissioners about the importance of protest letters. He explained that he had previously been informed that none had been received by the Railroad Commission, but following inquiries by other Burns family attorneys, more than 200 protest letters turned up.

There's not a date yet set for a public hearing but when there is, it will be in Austin. You know, the RRC ought to come have hearings IN THE COUNTY where the protest is held. It's really a hard ship to have to go down to Austin just to not get crap near your property... but do it anyway.

The law requires a public hearing on the matter. The date of the hearing, to be held in Austin, has not yet been announced, but Commissioner Jimmy Schmidt encouraged residents to attend that meeting.

He said, "When we stand together, we make a stronger stand."

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1 - commonsense   22 Mar 2007 @ 8:36:13 PM 

A commercial gas well is designed to operate 24 hours a day,  for as long as wells are being drilled and need disposal. This is expected to run for many years. A waste well drilled for a few wells by an operator has only the lifetime of setting up those designated gas wells (usually a matter of several months only). This 5-acre commercial Kopperl disposal well is leased from land owned by one fella, being drilled by WEC Inc with headquarters in Corpus Christi, and I heard today, will be operated by a group with the name Lindsey (Lindsay).

It may be a coincidence, but the last I heard the name Lindsey, it was a wholly owned subsidiary of an oil/gas company out of South America. These guys are also trying to quietly lease in south Hill County and northern McClennan. One mineral owner was told that they were "not drilling Barnett Shale." With the invasion into Bosque County, it leads me to believe they intend to drill "nonproductive toxic disposal wells" in those two areas now. Does anyone have more information on these people?

One issue I haven't seen in the paper. Who is monitoring these waste trucks? Can anyone track the real quantity of waste water coming from a gas well site, and match it to the real disposal records. I predict we will notice this summer, when everything is suppose to be green, that we will have brown patches along our county roads where this contaminated saltwater has been dumped to run down creeks to the rivers and Lake Whitney. In fact, a Kopperl resident told me that he talked with a disposal truck driver who told him he was currently dumping "into a well on Indian Lodge Road (which is CR 1190). Knowing there are no approved dump sites in the area, I drove the road and saw (remote from residential view) 3 culverts that lead directly under the railroad tracks and out onto Corp of Engineers property next to the river. Dumping could easily be done without leaving the road or tire tracks. Rather convenient for someone who doesn't know better.

I welcome the gas industry, but it is not safe to assume that all the gas related service businesses are acutely aware of safety and environmental consequences.

I applaud Devon Energy for taking the initiative to implement a recycling project. Hopefully, the bill that Representative Chet Edwards has been a part, will aid with initiate funding, the study and endeavor to find recycling processes that work. The gas industry is not our enemy. We need to work together to find  solutions economically feasible to everyone.

Just so you know, if a well is permitted near your home/land, you are required to disclose the information to all potential buyers. Be prepared to visit your Tax Assessor's office, because the value of your land just dropped like a rock. Furthermore, the inescapable air pollution from the well operations will make your land toxic and unsafe to live there. Of course, if you are collecting significant monthly payments because you leased to the disposal operating company, you may find it real easy to walk away and find a home in an area that had the ability to say no. 


(Moderator: Please feel free to edit if you see I'm sharing too much information. The public needs to know this situation effects everyone, their land/home, our rivers and Lake Whitney, not just people who do not have a gas well.)

2 - salon   22 Mar 2007 @ 9:14:25 PM 

I absolutely don't think you're sharing too much info. Interesting about the possible Lindsey connection. No one, to my knowledge, monitors the waste trucks. The RRC doesn't do it, there's no checking of what they are actually injecting, and I, like you, heard a story when I went to the Hico RRC meeting from a woman who told me she had seen a truck dumping the waste on the side of the road that goes down to Rough Creek Lodge.  I thought that was pretty disgusting, but, as you say, who really knows?

I believe that the gas industry will not do recycling of water nor the RRC work to actually monitor and regulate injection wells unless state legislation is passed; because I don't think they will do it otherwise.

And right-this affects us all. Even if a person doesn't care about clean water or land, maybe he or she would care about the lowering of property values.

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