Max Harleman and Jeremy Weber (Univ. Pittsburgh, GSPIA) in Pittsburgh Post Gazette, July 18,2021.
Energy from oil and gas wells fueled American industrial growth and powered our country through two world wars and two energy crises. But today, many of the wells that were drilled 50, 100, or even more years ago lie abandoned in fields and backyards, from California to Pennsylvania. They can leak greenhouse gases that cause climate change, leak gases and liquids that threaten the health and safety of local residents, and deter local investment in real estate.
Hundreds of thousands of these old wells were owned by firms that have gone out of business and have become the responsibility of taxpayers. With this in mind, a bipartisan group of legislators has introduced the REGROW Act. It would invest $4.7 billion in plugging abandoned wells and remediating the surrounding land to the benefit of local economies and the environment.
Full Op-Ed HERE
See also the ORVI post re REGROW, with links to their two 2021 reports on abandoned wells.
Photo caption/credit: Bubbles of methane gas in water around an unplugged oil/gas well in Pennsylvania. Mary Kang. McGill University.