Initial OK for rules to limit effects of drilling

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email

DENVER (AP) -- Colorado regulators have preliminarily approved rules designed to limit the impacts of oil and gas drilling, including a rule increasing the distance that rigs must be from homes.

The Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission on Wednesday gave initial approval to rules including one requiring wells to be 500 feet from buildings, up from a 350-foot buffer it had floated earlier.

Other rules require operators planning to drill within 1,000 feet of occupied buildings to meet new measures to limit noise, odor, dust and emissions.

Also Wednesday, state officials said they would launch a study of how oil and gas emissions behave, how they travel and their characteristics in areas along the northern Front Range, which has become a hotbed for drilling.

A second phase would study possible health effects.

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