Williams proposes natural gas plant
Williams Production Co. of Tulsa, Okla., is planning to build a natural gas processing plant and 17-mile pipeline near Parachute.
The processing plant would be located about five miles north of Parachute, adjacent to American Soda and near Williams’ office on County Road 215.
The 20-inch pipeline would run five miles from the plant to the Interstate 70 corridor, and then 12 miles along the highway to meet the TransColorado gas collection pipeline a mile west of DeBeque.
Williams has applied for a special use permit from Garfield County to collect natural gas from its approximately 600 natural gas wells in the area and process it to a sellable grade.
Late last year Williams purchased approximately 1,800 acres north of Parachute from Unocal. The bulk of the property and the proposed site of the gas plant, 1,370 acres, was Unocal’s man camp and RV park, which housed workers during the oil shale boom in the early 1980s, said county planner Randy Russell.
Russell expressed concerns for the plant involving water rights, fire protection, site reclamation and potential impacts to Parachute Creek from leaked gas and its byproducts.
He recommended, and the commissioners agreed, to continue the public hearing to June 17 to give Williams time to provide more information about water rights.
According to Russell, a water well on the Unocal property, which would be used for irrigation, dust control and in natural gas processing, was not deeded to Williams when it bought the property from Unocal.
“There is concern about actual decreed well allocation for water and augmentation plans, where Williams is not mentioned as a deeded interest,” Russell said.
Nor has Williams submitted a plan for reclaiming the site after its useful life is completed.
“The applicant will also need to submit a storm water runoff and emergency containment proposal, with special attention to the proximate riparian areas and Parachute Creek,” Russell said.
Parachute Creek runs through the property and the pipeline would cross it at one point. The plant would be within 100 yards of the creek, Russell said.
Sid Lindauer, a Parachute rancher, voiced his concerns about the plant Monday.
“I live a half mile south of two small gas processing plants. Every night I go to sleep hearing the noise from the compressors in those plants,” he said.
Another, larger plant will compound the problem, he added.
Lindauer also expressed concern about potential pollution of Parachute Creek, as well as air in the valley, from the plant’s emissions.
“There is no background data on air quality (in the valley) and water quality in Parachute Creek. I’d like to see that before the new processing plant is constructed,” he said.
Lindauer also said he is building a new house on his property.
“My grandchildren will be here in the summer. I want to make sure they are breathing good air, and my livestock are not drinking bad water,” he said.
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