Letter: Drilling companies work hard to reduce environmental impacts
Drilling companies work hard to reduce environmental impacts
I find some of Mike Kaplan’s recent comments in Friday’s Aspen Times story “Skico pushes ahead on climate” a bit disturbing. I believe Aspen Skiing Co. provides a wonderful service to our community and is a primary reason Aspen has become a place that we all desire to live. I understand his desire to promote being good stewards of the land and green energy. The article quotes Kaplan saying, “(D)rill pads pocked the land the entire way between Aspen and Salt Lake.” Couldn’t someone flying over Aspen and Snowmass say the same thing about having tens of thousands of trees destroyed to cut ski runs into a pristine forest next to the Maroon Bells-Snowmass Wilderness area? He went on to say there should be incentives to make drillers consolidate pads and reduce dust. These comments lead me to believe that he knows very little about what efforts drilling companies have done to reduce their impacts on the environment. I think you would be very surprised at what lengths these companies have gone to reduce their impacts. Did you know that WPX Energy is using nearly 100 percent recycled water in their hydraulic fracturing operations near Parachute? Did you know that they are laying pipe from the water reclamation facility to their completion sites, so that they can reduce the amount of truck traffic to well sites? Do you know that drilling companies are drilling up to 32 wells per pad in the Piceance Basin? Do you know that drilling companies are moving to dual-fuel rigs to use “off gas” and LNG in place of diesel to further lower their emissions? It is a great thing to want to reduce your company’s carbon footprint. It is, however, disingenuous to discuss another industry’s shortcomings without giving them credit for the steps they are taking to be better stewards of the land. Have you been to a drilling site lately, or ever? I think you might actually be impressed at the strides the industry has taken to lessen their impacts and I would be happy to arrange the opportunity for you to see it firsthand. Before your next trip to Washington, it might be beneficial to actually know what drilling companies are currently doing to reduce their impacts on the environment.
Ari B. Chaney
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