The fight has been particularly fierce in Colorado, where the proximity of drilling activities to communities has been the subject of several years of legal battles. Voters there look bound for the polls in White Navy Nike Cortez November, when they will weigh in on whether to place further restrictions on the industry.
"The common sense approach will still be there," Watson said.
And in Texas, long the keystone of the country's oil and gas industry, the question is left up to communities themselves. Dallas chose a buffer of 1,500 feet. Fort Worth, home to 1,700 producing wells within its city limits, has a minimum distance of 600 feet.
Few issues have prompted more debate nationwide during the recent expansion in oil and gas drilling than the proximity of oil and gas wells to neighborhoods.
Greater buffers are needed around communities in large part because of the duration of today's drilling operations, said Jill Morrison, an organizer at the resource council.
Wyoming seeks to address drilling near communities
In the coming months, the Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission is expected to release its own proposal for expanding the state's setback.
Last year, the group petitioned the oil and gas commission for a review of the setback, flaring and bonding rules.
Wyoming's setback is 350 feet, though that could soon change.
In Wyoming, the issue is not as widespread as it is often made out to be, said Wyoming Oil and Gas SupervisorMark Watson.
Combined with companies' ability to drill multiple wells per well pad, residents face extended periods living with the noise and fumes of a drilling operation, she said.
"The landowners, the ones I've met with, they are Nike Cortez Mens On Feet
company plans to drill multiple wells on a well pad, extending the drilling period from a matter of weeks to as long as a year, Watson said.
The Powder River Basin Resource Council, a Sheridan based landowners group, was the primary force pressing the state to consider its setback laws.
"What I would like to see instead of changing the rule, I'd like to see the commission use the rules they already have," Robitaille said. "Our state is changing, but again, why are we not using the existing rule to its full effect?"
John Robitaille, vice president of the Petroleum Association of Wyoming,cautioned the state against changing its current rule.
Mead has said the state will consider all three, but a setback review is the priority.
Still, it is a balancing act, he said. Industry officials are worried that expanding the setback will make it difficult to economically access mineral reserves.
not against fracking like (people in) some other states, but they say, 'Why does it have to be so close to my house?'" Watson said.
He argued that the discretion described by Watson provides the flexibility needed to address landowners' concerns over a well's proximity.
The oil and gas supervisor recently visited Cheyenne to talk with landowners whose properties abut a site where EOG Resources plans to drill as many as 50 oil wells.
The oil and gas commission found that only 0.05 percent of drilling permits submitted during a four month period this year were within 500 to 700 feet of a dwelling.
The move comes in response to pressure from residents in Douglas, where oil wells now ring the town, and Cheyenne. Development there is expected to grow after years of speculation over the area's reserves of hydrocarbons.
"It is a whole different type of industrial activity that we have never seen before," Morrison said. "Wyoming is not in a position with its current rules and regulations to protect people's health and safety."
Watson nonetheless is taking the issue seriously. The directive to review the state's setback law came from Gov. Matt Mead.
One aspect of the rule that won't change: aprovision allowing the supervisor discretion to move a well closer or farther away from a dwelling provided that there is a reason for the move.
Colorado requires the same distance, though it also has stipulations for wells within 1,000 feet of Nike Cortez Nm Black
"high use buildings" like schools and hospitals.
A Pennsylvania ban on local drilling restrictions was overturned by the state Supreme Court last year.
"The oil and gas development is occurring in many more places closer to homes and communities," said Mark Squillace, director of the Natural Resource Law Center at the University of Colorado at Boulder. "It's partly the setback issue and whether wells are coming too close to homes, but also the local impacts of widespread development. It is the truck traffic, the noise, the air pollution."
In North Dakota, the epicenter of the current American energy boom, oil and gas wells cannot be drilled within 500 feet of a home, business or school.
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