Thursday, December 15, 2011


The company claims to have been told that two DEP employees told them that no permitting for flaring was necessary.. hmmm.. either the company is lying or those two employees need to be disciplined for furnishing improper information.

The fine for illegal flaring is $10,000 per day PER WELL for each day of flaring over 30 days, up to a cap of $250,000. Bluescape are flaring THREE WELLS right now.. that's a possible fine of $750,000 I believe....
And it seems that "A group of concerned locals called STand Up Now (STUN) says it alerted officials to the situation." Well done those people! 


Report from the Register-Herald, 15th December 2011

An illegal gas well flare in Nicholas County has burned since the end of August, according to a violation notice issued by the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection.

Dallas-based Bluescape Resources Co. (BRC), owns the illegal flare stack and the three gas wells that flow to it, near Richwood.

With no pipeline to transport the natural gas flowing from the Marcellus shale formation, the company says it has no choice but to burn it. But doing so requires a permit, which the company doesn’t yet have.

Donald Campo, chief operating officer of BRC, wrote in a Nov. 8 reply to WVDEP’s violation notice that “two officials from the Office of Oil and Gas independently told BRC that the flare required no permits or approvals from DEP.”

BRC applied for an after-the-fact air quality permit on Nov. 16, but it has not yet been issued. The flare is 108 days old as of Wednesday, and a penalty of up to $10,000 per day could be issued by the WVDEP.

Officials at the WVDEP’s Division of Air Quality are in the midst of negotiations with the company.

DEP spokesman Tom Aluise says the agency would “rather not discuss specifics of the case because it is an ongoing enforcement issue,” and that more information will be available once the violation is finalized. Aluise says a timeline isn’t set and “depends on BRC and the negotiations.”

The company installed the wells without a means to move the gas, they say, to determine whether the wells “are economically viable.”

“If the wells, and others in the surrounding area of Nicholas County, are proven to have sufficient productivity to be economically viable, then BRC will work to install a natural gas pipeline to allow the production from these reserves to reach the commercial market,” wrote Campos.

He adds that “BRC cannot shut in the wells or the flare without suffering irreparable financial damage and harm.”

The temporary air quality permit application would allow for around-the-clock, continuous flaring of the wells’ 4,860 cubic feet per second output.

The gas coming from the wells is 97 percent methane, according to an analysis in the permit application, with ethane, carbon dioxide, nitrogen, propane, butane, and sulfur composing the rest.

The permit application lists the maximum potential emissions per hour from the flare as 35,000 pounds of carbon dioxide; 300 pounds of methane; 110 pounds of carbon monoxide; 20 pounds of nitrogen oxide; and trace amounts of sulphur dioxide.

A group of concerned locals called STand Up Now (STUN) says it alerted officials to the situation.

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