Ursa clarifies: No drilling is planned north of Silt in 2013 | PostIndependent.com

Ursa clarifies: No drilling is planned north of Silt in 2013

John Colson
Post Independent Staff
Glenwood Springs, Colorado CO

GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado – An official of the Ursa energy company said on Monday that he is worried some citizens may be confused about the company’s plans for drilling gas wells in the vicinity of the town of Silt.

“The drilling that we talked about would be more in the southern portions of town,” said Don Simpson, vice president for business development for Ursa.

The company last year bought up the assets of Antero Resources in Western Colorado and currently is working out how to capitalize on those assets.

In an article on March 9, Simpson confirmed that, for 2013, Ursa will not be drilling inside the boundaries of the Battlement Mesa unincorporated community near the town of Parachute.

Antero had announced plans to drill up to 200 wells from nine well pads inside Battlement Mesa, although the drilling had not begun when Ursa bought Antero’s assets late last year.

Simpson told the Post Independent, however, that the company is expecting to drill wells outside the community’s boundaries this year, to see how those wells perform.

In the same interview, Simpson gave hazy predictions about the company’s plans for drilling more wells on Silt Mesa, a semi-rural area situated at a slightly higher elevation and just north of the town of Silt.

Simpson emphasized in a telephone conversation on Monday that the company would not be drilling new wells on Silt Mesa this year.

Simpson said the confusion was one of “terminology,” explaining that the company had not quite absorbed the geographic distinctions of the area, particularly the difference between the town of Silt and Silt Mesa.

“To us, it’s all just Silt,” he said.

The name of the town, he added, was taken by Ursa managers to mean the areas north and south of the river and within town boundaries, as well as the area north of town and outside town boundaries, known as Silt Mesa.

“The drilling that we talked about would be in the southern portions of the town,” he said, either between I-70 and the Colorado River or south of the river.

Several wells drilled by Antero on Silt Mesa in 2010, Simpson said, remain capped off and are awaiting connection to a pipeline.

He explained that the company, at this point, is thinking of waiting until the price of natural gas rises from its current historically low levels before going to the expense of building a pipeline to those wells.

Taken altogether, he said, that means the company will not be drilling any wells on Silt Mesa in 2013, but will be concentrating its attentions on the area to the south of downtown Silt.


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