GWPC Checklist for Regulators on Well Integrity

A commentary by Adam Peltz, Environmental Defense Fund

After several years of collaboration among regulatory experts from across the country, the Groundwater Protection Council (GWPC), recently published a set of 136 “Regulatory Elements” intended to provide regulators with ideas to consider when improving oversight of the permitting, construction, operation and plugging of oil and gas wells.

This may sound dry, but regulations addressing these elements are what keep oil and gas wells from blowing up during drilling or later leaking methane, oil, saltwater, hydraulic fracturing fluid, and other contaminants into air or groundwater.

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With over 15 million Americans living within a mile of a well, strong rules on well integrity covering the wide variety of topics addressed in these elements make a huge difference to human health and the environment.

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Annual Forum Presentations Online

The majority of presentations from the 2016 Annual Forum held in Orlando are now available on the GWPC Web site. To view, click on the conference day 1, 2, or 3.

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Other News

Alabama State Geologist Recognized for Contributions to the Field of Geoscience

The American Geosciences Institute (AGI) is pleased to recognize Berry H. “Nick” Tew, Jr., the State Geologist of Alabama, with the AGI Medal in Memory of Ian Campbell for Superlative Service to the Geosciences, its highest award. He is recognized for his roles, abilities and successes in bringing academia, government, industry and the public together to address major societal challenges in the geosciences.

Dr. Tew has served as State Geologist and Oil and Gas Supervisor of Alabama for 14 years and, in these capacities, he directs the Geological Survey of Alabama and the State Oil and Gas Board. He also holds an appointment as a Research Professor in the Department of Geological Sciences at The University of Alabama, where he directs the Center for Sedimentary Basin Studies. He is a fellow at the Geological Society of America, a member of the National Petroleum Council; the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s Unconventional Hydrocarbon Roundtable; and the Executive Board of the Council of Scientific Society Presidents, and a Commissioner of the North American Commission on Stratigraphic Nomenclature.

He has been deeply involved with the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission and the Groundwater Protection Council and is a leader in the dialog surrounding the development of unconventional hydrocarbon resources, serving on the Board of the State Oil and Gas Regulatory Exchange.

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EPA Launches the Climate Resilience Evaluation and Awareness Tool (CREAT) Version 3.0

(EPA Climate Change and Water News)

CREAT 3.0 assists drinking water, wastewater and stormwater utility owners and operators in understanding potential climate change threats and in assessing the related risks at their individual utilities. CREAT 3.0 is now web-based and features a series of intuitive modules designed to help utilities complete a climate change risk assessment, redesigned from the ground up to provide a more user-friendly experience. The Climate Ready Water Utilities initiative has updated its Climate Projection Scenario Map using data provided in CREAT. The map gives access to projected changes in annual total precipitation, annual average temperature, annual number of days over 100°F, 100-year storm intensity, and sea-level rise at their location.

Learn More and Access CREAT

New EPA Study Supports the Long-term Benefits of Green Infrastructure

(EPA Climate Change and Water News)

The EPA conducted a study to estimate the groundwater recharge benefits from application of small storm retention practices on new development and redevelopment nationwide. The study focuses on areas in the U.S. where groundwater is a significant contributor to urban and agricultural uses and where water shortages may occur in the future under different climate change scenarios. The results show that, over time, the use of green infrastructure can save hundreds of millions of dollars in groundwater resources, while just applying the practices to new development and redevelopment only. If retrofitting or increased retention were to occur, the groundwater benefits would be even more significant. 

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Georgetown Climate Center Releases New Green Infrastructure Toolkit

(EPA Climate Change and Water News)

The Green Infrastructure Toolkit is designed to help local governments at different stages find the resources and examples that are most helpful to them. The toolkit analyzes common trends in the approaches various cities are taking to planning, implementing, and funding green infrastructure to manage stormwater. The toolkit is organized by chapters that provide an overview of the main issues and brief analysis, accompanied by in-depth case studies of local governments that have implemented the particular tool or policy.

Check Out the New Toolkit

Upcoming Events

2017 UIC Annual Conference

February 21 - 23, 2017
Austin, Texas

More information coming soon!

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