Abandonment concerns

In the past, abandoning fields on land was relatively easy, with the major consideration being to seal wells to prevent contaminating freshwater aquifers.But as government regulations have proliferated, the process has become more complicated and costly, encompassing not just wells but, in some locations, also cleaning up and restoring the adjacent land to a relatively pristine state.In the US, states began regulating well abandonments in the 1930s. Prior to that, many wells were left without any seals or plugged with material such as lumber or tree limbs. The fact that regulations differ from state to state complicates the abandonment process in the US.For many fields, an operator's ...

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