Alberta needs better rules to ensure polluters clean up wells: Orphan Well Association



A group tasked with cleaning up Alberta’s thousands of abandoned energy facilities says the province’s rules to make sure polluters clean up their wells before selling them off are inadequate.

Alberta’s energy regulator is considering the transfer of hundreds of toxic gas wells, pipelines and other facilities from energy giant Shell Canada to Calgary-based Pieridae Energy, a much smaller company.

READ MORE: Planned sale of gas wells, pipelines raises cleanup concerns



The industry-funded Orphan Well Association says there are serious concerns about whether Pieridae will be able to run and reclaim the sour gas wells and pipelines.

The association says the regulator even considering the transfer shows how weak the system is when it comes to assessing risks.

The association’s concerns are echoed by at least two energy majors.

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Cenovus and Canadian Natural Resources say they doubt Pieridae is a viable operator and that cleanup could cost up to $500 million.

Fourteen area landowners also are objecting to the sale.




© 2020 The Canadian Press








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