City Of Greeley

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Oil and Gas FAQs

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1100 Tenth Street
Greeley, CO 80631
tel: (970) 350-9780
fax: (970) 350-9800
M-F 8-5 (MST)
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The Drilling Process
Oil and gas drilling – and its regulation – are fairly technical, and the City understands that citizens often have many questions concerning both. A “ Frequently Asked Questions” is available to answer many common questions, such as “How does drilling work?” and “Are Greeley’s police and fire departments trained for a disaster related to a blowout or gas well fire?” A “ Fast Facts” flyer provides a shorter primer on the language of drilling and local regulations.

Oil and gas drilling is a complex process, with a complex relationship to people and the environment. In addition to others found on-line, this video shows the basic technique used to access minerals. One technique, hydraulic fracturing ("fracking"), is used in almost all modern wells. This brochure and information from the COGCC give some information. Operators must list chemicals used in fracking at a registry, "FracFocus."

City of Greeley Oil & Gas Local Development Regulations
Within City limits, oil and gas facilities are reviewed as a “ Use by Special Review," a type of land use (zoning) permit for land uses that are allowed, but generally benefit from greater scrutiny. As such, there are additional design standards required of oil and gas facilities, and the Use by Special Review must be reviewed and approved by the Planning Commission. Specific regulations concerning oil and gas are found in Title 18.56, and all other applicable standards from the Development Code (Chapter 18) also apply.

State of Colorado Oil & Gas Regulations
Roughly speaking, the State regulates all below-ground and active drilling aspects of oil and gas development. The Colorado Oil and Gas Conversation Commission (“COGCC”) is responsible for state permitting and all aspects of drilling and extraction that are considered matters of State interest.

The State regularly processes operators’ permit requests, which are often submitted months or years in advance of actual activity on the site. Notices of these permits are sent to respective local jurisdictions through the city-appointed Local Government Designee.
Regional and local mapping of well sites is available on our map as well as through the COGCC well map.

Public Health Considerations
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment ("CDPHE") provides a summary of some of the many studies of the potential health effects associated with oil and gas production. The CDPHE is also involved in review and consultation of oil and gas sites.

Questions about the impacts of oil and gas production to regional air quality are being researched in more detail on a national scale. Within the State of Colorado, several studies are planned, with work being conducted in 2014 and expected to conclude in 2016. Ozone readings at the Greeley ozone monitoring station have been variable since 1990 and are part of the State's overall air quality monitoring program.

For more information, please check out our External Resources.

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