Ursa: No drilling in Battlement Mesa in 2013
Post Independent Staff
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado – The Ursa energy company will not be drilling within the Battlement Mesa Planned Unit Development neighborhood near Parachute this year, a company official confirmed on Friday.
The news had been announced by Ursa spokesman Don Simpson at recent “meet-and-greet” gatherings in Silt and Battlement Mesa.
When the announcement was relayed to attendees at a March 7 meeting of the Garfield County Energy Advisory Board in Rifle, the audience burst into applause.
Last year, Ursa purchased the assets of Antero Resources in the Piceance Basin, which underlies much of western Garfield County as well as portions of Utah and Wyoming.
Antero had planned to drill up to 200 wells, from nine well pads, within or adjacent to the unincorporated community of Battlement Mesa near Parachute, a plan that ran into stiff opposition from some residents of the community.
Instead of following Antero’s plan, Simpson explained, “We thought we can access what we need to at this time without doing that.”
He said the company expects to drill an undetermined number what he termed “S” wells near Battlement Mesa, which he said is the kind of gas wells that primarily have been drilled in this region over the past decade.
“It’s not a true horizontal well,” he said, explaining that a true horizontal well sends its horizontal bore up to two miles, much further than the “S” wells do.
“I guess you could call it directional drilling of a sort,” he said of the “S” wells, because they do go down for a distance and then turn to the side to shoot horizontally, but for a shorter span.
He said it remains unknown how many wells may be drilled around the Battlement Mesa area this year, but predicted, “It’s going to keep a drilling rig busy from probably July-ish through the end of the year.”
Simpson was unable to say much about the prospects of drilling in the Silt Mesa area north of the Town of Silt.
“I don’t know,” he said, replying to a reporter’s question. “It’s going to be kind of split between Silt Mesa and Battlement. It may be about half and half. It’s all based on results [from exploratory wells]. We’ll see what kind of results we get and go from there.”
Simpson had earlier told a reporter that the company would be conducting “workover” operations on approximately 50 existing wells south of Silt, a plan that he said on Friday is still in place.
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