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Best Management Practices

The EFD-TIP team integrates advanced technologies into systems that significantly reduce the footprint of oil and gas drilling and production in environmentally sensitive areas. The objective is to identify, develop and transfer critical, cost effective, new technologies that can provide industry and policy makers with the ability to develop reserves in a safe and environmentally friendly manner.

The Getches-Wilkinson Center for Natural Resources, Energy and the Environment (GWC) at the University of Colorado Law has developed a free-access, searchable database and supporting website for best management practices (BMPs). The GWC developed the database/website in conjunction with project partners and advisors from government, industry, the conservation community and academia. Launched in 2009, this project focuses upon the Intermountain West (CO, MT, NM, UT, WY). It includes federal, state and local regulatory requirements as well as voluntary practices currently in use, required and/or recommended for the protection of surface resources.

Intermountain Oil and Gas Drilling BMP Project

Law Atlas

As improved technological developments in directional drilling and hydraulic fracturing have resulted in a boom of oil and gas production nationwide, laws pertaining to oil and gas are evolving as well.  In an effort to compare regimes across jurisdictions, the University of Colorado Boulder's Intermountain Oil and Gas Best Management Practices Project in partnership with Temple University's Public Health Law Research Program, www.lawatlas.org/oilandgas.

This was created as a comparative tool for examining laws and regulations related to oil and gas development in Colorado, Louisiana, Montana, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Texas, Utah, West Virginia and Wyoming. These states represent the jurisdictions that overlay major shale formations such as the Bakken, Eagle Ford, Greater Green River, Haynesville, Mancos, Marcellus, Niobrara, Permian, Piceance, Powder River, San Juan, Uinta, and Woodford.

The database is a resource that policymakers, local governments, regulated entities, and concerned citizens can use to inform themselves about the scope of laws and the best implemented laws for various issues pertaining to oil and gas development.

The project currently includes water quality and water quantity regulations and will soon add a dataset on air quality. In the coming year, more states, as well as federal and local law, and additional areas will be added as time and resources permit.

For more information on the BMP project, contact Kathryn Mutz and on the LawAtlas project, contact Matt Samelson at oilandgasbmps@colorado.edu.