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Nelia

Sour Gas Wells

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Nelia

In today's Calgary Herald, there is an article about the Sour Gas Well development just south of Calgary. There is a little map that indicates the Emergency Planning Zones.

On January, 19, at 11:30 there is a presentation by Gary Nelson from the Energy Utilities Board on various aspects related to Sour Gas Wells. The cost for the luncheon is $35 and it is organised by CPANS - part of the Air and Waste Managers Association.

The deadline for reservation is Friday, 14 January. The contact person is Piotr Staniaszek at AMEC. His e-mail is piotr.staniaszek at amec.com.

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Merv

Please inform the ignorant (me), what are sour gas wells and why do I need to know about them :blink:

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Nelia

Merv,

Previously, oil and gas wells were mostly in rural areas, away from towns and cities. However, with a fast growing city like Calgary, urban people are getting closer and closer to these wells. (On another note, I saw a map that at present growth, Airdrie and Okotoks would be suburbs of Calgary by 2050)

Sour gas is natural gas that contains poisonous hydrogen sulphide (H2S), which is flammable and colourless. About 1/3 of Alberta's natural gas production is considered sour. This was one of the main reasons why people had to evacuate in Edmonton when that well leaked.

Legislation requires that an Emergency Planning Zone be established - at present at a radius of 15km. This will include a large part of southern Calgary. The company developing the wells argues that a smaller zone, based on increased safety and technology, a 4km radius be established. Based on the map that I have, this will include no existing Calgary communities.

One side argues that it is to dangerous to have such well developments close to urban areas, the other side argues that it is the price you have to pay when living in Alberta and especially a fast growing city like Calgary.

Another note - the official EUB hearing starts today if interested.

I hope that this clarifies things a bit. You can get more information in general and also in specific on the Crompton applications as www.eub.gov.ab.ca and then click on Crompton Petroleum Applications. This will give you specific information.

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Merv

Thanks for the update. The question I always ask myself in situations like this is pretty simplistic, "Who was there first?". Like the people who buy a house in a new subdivision close to an airport and then start complaining/campaigning about the noise from the planes.

If there was a new development going to be situated close to an existing housing area then that would be a different story, the houses were there first.

My two cents

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Nelia

Merv,

I suppose it depends - the gas was definitely there first, but not the wells in this specific instance. The houses came after the gas but before the wells. The problem with natural resources, you can't move it. The question then is whether you should allow extraction so close to people and living in a province where oil and gas is the name of the game, it becomes a political debate very quickly.

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frogprince
Merv,

I suppose it depends - the gas was definitely there first, but not the wells in this specific instance.  The houses came after the gas but before the wells.  The problem with natural resources, you can't move it.  The question then is whether you should allow extraction so close to people and living in a province where oil and gas is the name of the game, it becomes a political debate very quickly.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

And as far as I know it actually gets a little more complex than that -- you can own the land you've bought except for the mineral rights. In practical terms you can build your house there only to be told that the province might want to allow someone to drill a well in your living room :rolleyes: .

Ok that would be pretty extreme, but effectively there is still a mining rights hold on private land that would allow the province to buy up land for development.

I guess at issue really is the size of the no-mans land that divides suburbs, and in that sense whoever owned if first is less relevant.

Regards,

Frog.

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