Energy policy — oil and gas: New Colorado rules start kicking in

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From the Associated Press (Judith Kohler) via the Aspen Times: “The rules kicked in on private land Wednesday. The roughly 100 new and revised oil and gas rules carry out laws requiring regulators to give more weight to the environment, public health and safety, and wildlife when they approve oil and gas development. Changes include new standards for oil and gas waste pits, protection of drinking water supplies and more input from landowners and state health and wildlife experts. Still unresolved is a handful of issues that task forces are expected to tackle soon. They include how far drilling rigs must be from occupied buildings, buffers around waterways, reclamation of well sites, guidelines for minimizing impacts on wildlife and coordinating with counties that have their own rules. The state and U.S. Bureau of Land Management will also address enforcement of the state regulations on federal land. They’re expected to update a long-standing agreement on oil and gas development. Regulators will rewrite one of the new rules to eliminate state wildlife and health agencies’ ability to appeal drilling permits. The industry protested the provision, noting that the agencies’ directors sit on the commission that would decide the appeals.”

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