City and County Manager, Jennifer Hoffman, sent a letter to the Director of the Colorado Oil and Gas Commission (COGCC), Jeff Robbins, to formally submit the Davis 43-6 plugged and abandoned well to the COGCC Orphaned Well Program, because the final testing results came back the afternoon of Oct. 11 and subsurface methane readings taken and analyzed in the area of the well showed that it is the likely source. A map of the well location is linked here.
Verbally COGCC has accepted the well into the Orphaned Well Program as of Oct. 11. COGCC’s Orphaned Well Program is funded for circumstances where an operator is no longer operating in Colorado. It allows COGCC to remedy improperly plugged and abandoned wells.
The COGCC reconfirmed Oct. 11 that there is not an immediate risk to the residents in this area from methane associated with this situation. While the City and County of Broomfield appreciate that confirmation, we will remain vigilant in our monitoring, constant contact with COGCC, and contact with North Metro Fire Rescue District to get their updates on additional readings.
To recap - The proactive soil and gas testing program that Broomfield instituted on plugged and abandoned wells discovered the soil in the area of the Davis 43-6 well had elevated methane readings. As a result of these readings and after consultation with the COGCC staff, Broomfield authorized additional testing at lower depths in the area of the Davis 43-6 well. Broomfield received the lab results Oct. 11. In discussing these results with experts at the COGCC, COGCC determined that the Davis 43-6 plugged and abandoned well is a likely source of the gases detected.
As indicated in the letter, Broomfield is urging the COGCC to prioritize the work associated with the Davis 43-6 well, due to its suburban location. COGCC has committed to taking the next steps as quickly as possible to do monitoring and assessment, including continuous monitoring of combustible gases. COGCC has indicated a radius of 200 feet around the well location will be necessary to complete the remediation of the well.
An estimated timeline for future activities includes:
10/15/19 - Further review of laboratory results by COGCC staff; discussion with contractors and procurement needed to establish funding and make necessary equipment available
10/16/19 - Meeting with Broomfield to discuss next steps and logistics
Week of 10/21/19 - Additional assessment (e.g., taking additional deep probe samples)
Early November - If necessary, expose and replug well
In the meantime, the North Metro Fire Rescue District is offering to provide air monitoring in the general area of the Davis 43-6 plugged and abandoned well, where initial methane readings were found as a result of Broomfield's soil gas testing program. Currently, the testing will focus on homes in the following areas that are in closest proximity to the location of the Davis 43-6 well:
On Grahams Peak Way
On Spanish Peak Way, south of Mount Powell Drive
On Mount Powell Drive located from Spanish Peak Way, west to the end of the street
In an effort to make the monitoring as convenient as possible for residents, the NMFD on site monitoring is planned for Saturday and Sunday (10/12/2019 and 10/13/2019) from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., on a sign-up basis.
Residents are asked to contact NMFRD directly at 303.452.9910 to sign up. Broomfield is also making UL combustible gas detectors available for residents living at the locations listed above. To request a UL combustible gas detector please call 303.438.6382 or email firstname.lastname@example.org, we have the monitors ready for distribution.