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Old 09-19-2012, 06:36 AM
 
98 posts, read 155,185 times
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Good Morning!
Hubby and I will probably be moving to the Boulder/Denver area. My due diligence to researching schools, areas, etc., has turned up fracking incidents in the area, as well as the multitude of permits that have been issued for drill sites and that number is, quite frankly, shocking.

I see the drill sites, and the inordinate amount of homes for sale in some of these areas...Erie for example.

How bad is fracking in CO and just how much is affecting the groundwater?

Looking forward to hearing from you.....
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Old 09-19-2012, 07:26 AM
 
Location: Colorado
4,308 posts, read 11,471,297 times
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A lot of locals are fighting it tooth and nail, especially in the Longmont area.
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Old 09-19-2012, 09:31 AM
 
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From what I'm reading, fighting it won't help because all the laws/guidelines the individual cities have tried to pass have been shot down because the state and federal laws governing fracking trump the local laws.

So I'm reading that the folks in Longmont and Erie are selling houses at a record pace in anticipation of water contamination. I'm following from a distance, so what's the talk there?

Thank you!
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Old 09-19-2012, 09:37 AM
 
Location: N. Colorado
345 posts, read 758,497 times
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Oil Wells, fracking and etc are a part of Colorado. If that bothers you, you might want to reconsider living here.
If you own acreage as I do, then the chances are good that you do not own the mineral rights to your property and have no say if they can drill or not on it. My neighbor has three wells on his property and he does not have the mineral rights, he gets nothing from them money-wise.

Back before the Summer they were doing seismic testing for weeks. Yet before the testing was done or any of the results were read they were drilling four wells in a small area inside the testing area. Plus they were fracking another well a couple of miles to the West.
So far no quakes here But my well water has come up cloudy a couple of times, my neighbor claims it happens when they are too close to the aquifer.

People can fight all they like but the oil companies have far more funds and lawyers on retainer to keep it going till they win, sad but true
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Old 09-19-2012, 09:50 AM
 
98 posts, read 155,185 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gmm_24 View Post
Oil Wells, fracking and etc are a part of Colorado. If that bothers you, you might want to reconsider living here.
If you own acreage as I do, then the chances are good that you do not own the mineral rights to your property and have no say if they can drill or not on it. My neighbor has three wells on his property and he does not have the mineral rights, he gets nothing from them money-wise.

Back before the Summer they were doing seismic testing for weeks. Yet before the testing was done or any of the results were read they were drilling four wells in a small area inside the testing area. Plus they were fracking another well a couple of miles to the West.
So far no quakes here But my well water has come up cloudy a couple of times, my neighbor claims it happens when they are too close to the aquifer.

People can fight all they like but the oil companies have far more funds and lawyers on retainer to keep it going till they win, sad but true

Can you tell me the general area you are speaking about? It seems that there are more permits on the flatter areas around Boulder, rather than the foothills. Or am I mistaken?

Not so much the quakes I'm worried about...it's the aquifer.
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Old 09-19-2012, 10:25 AM
 
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As others have noted, frac'ing is practiced widely in nearly all active Colorado oil and gas fields. There is a big "play" going on in the Wattenberg Field in Colorado these days because that field has considerable recoverable oil and gas liquids (propanes, etc.). Literally, thousands of wells are being drilled in the Wattenberg Field, so that the oil companies can capitalize on the high petroleum prices. "Dry" gas (methane) is dirt cheap right now, so interest in those fields has declined in the last year or so--a lot less drilling activity and lot of methane wells being capped or shut-in. Oil is the big play right now, and the Wattenberg Field is a big part of that. As to what the hotbeds of activity within the field are, that will probably shift around, depending on where the geology looks favorable, where the companies can secure drilling rights, and what areas see favorable production from newly drilled wells. So long as oil prices stay high, the Wattenberg is going to be active, and frac'ing is going to be a big part of that activity. By the way, the Wattenberg is a long-known and long-producing field--directional drilling and frac'ing technologies are what have brought it back into high interest and drilling again.

A good technical report on the Wattenberg can be found here:

http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2011/1175/pdf/OF11-1175.pdf
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Old 09-19-2012, 10:34 AM
 
Location: Colorado
4,308 posts, read 11,471,297 times
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This is where we're up to: Hickenlooper declines anti-fracking event invitation - Longmont Times-Call

The state may have the power to decide for us, but a lot of people who can't or don't want to abandon Longmont will continue to fight against it.
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Old 09-19-2012, 10:52 AM
 
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Water is one of the most important things to know about before you buy property. I think that the Erie municipal system is off of surface water.
Erie, CO - Official Website - Water
When that is the case then you need to understand their water rights, seniority and whether they have enough water for the planned city growth. Lafayette was the poster child of poor water planning during the 2002 drought. Here is an article that discusses how they are trying to do better in the future.
Lafayette seeking liquid insurance for water supply - Boulder Daily Camera

Any place you have to depend on well water (the foothills, rural properties without water taps) draws from the ground water supply. This is at risk of contamination and with some aquifers they are being depleted faster than originally planned. Castle Rock is an example of this. From their web site. "The Town has a small, nonrenewable, groundwater-based system that has been in the modern water business about 30 years. We have no access to a river, lake or reservoir for our water supply. We have 50-plus deep groundwater wells, some up to 2,000 feet deep. These wells require a great deal of electricity just to pump water to the surface."

Here is an article on water and development in Douglas County.
Aquifer wells in Douglas County challenge renewable-water strategies - The Denver Post

When we were looking at houses anything in the foothills that seemed a great deal generally did not have a good well.

We also looked at Todd Creek. They are a lovely neighborhood who originally had a non-potable water supply for the houses. This caused the value to tank for the early buyers. They've straightened it out but you can take a look at their web site to see the types of restrictions they have.
Todd Creek Village Metropolitan District

They have a nice water update on the status of the drought.
http://www.toddcreekvillage.org/down...August2012.pdf
And the monitoring of the impact from fracking. It is a valid concern from those that depend on ground water.
http://www.toddcreekvillage.org/down...%20concern.pdf

It is best to buy in a water district that has good senior surface rights from renewable water sources.
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Old 09-19-2012, 11:06 AM
 
9,816 posts, read 19,026,437 times
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The oil and gas business has been hard at it in Colorado for nearly 100 years with no ill effects.

"Fracking" is changing quickly as technology improves every month. They are using 3D seismic surveys and drill operators can now be accurate down to a foot. In addition they are able now to drill much longer horizontals which reduce the number of well sites and water is quickly falling off in use for fracking, replaced with nitrogen or propane gels, which can be reharvested.

Instead of being panicked and hysterical, I just went out there and learned about the business and talked to people and found out what is really involved in fracking. The leftists are against it because it means the USA can become energy independent and leftists are not about citizens solving their own problems, rather they create a series of calamities and armageddon like scenarios that can only be fixed with more government rules and mucking about.
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Old 09-19-2012, 11:35 AM
 
8,317 posts, read 25,107,644 times
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While frac'ing can be don effectively and safely, I disagree with wanneroo's sanguine assessment of it. People I know who work DIRECTLY in the frac'ing industry are very concerned about very irresponsible frac'ing practices engaged in by both disreputable companies and by field workers failing to follow safe practices and guidelines. I am not a fan of over-regulation, but there are clearly cases where the public interests and safety and not being protected. By the way, I'm no leftist, either. That said, at the end of the day, protection of water resources in arid Colorado has to be of paramount concern. We need every drop.
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