By Eileen Houlihan
NEW YORK, Sept 16 A week of torrential rain in
Colorado that left seven people confirmed dead has also
disrupted oil and natural gas production and transportation in
the state, several companies said on Monday.
El Paso Pipeline Partners' Colorado Interstate Gas
(CIG) unit declared force majeure on a natural gas lateral
pipeline due to the floods.
CIG said in a website posting that the flooding had exposed
some facilities on the line leading to its Young Storage site.
Another line leading to the Tritown delivery point had also
become exposed. The lines were taken out of service for safety
precautions while inspections are conducted, the posting said.
CIG operates a 4,300-mile pipeline system that transports
natural gas from production areas in the Rocky Mountains and the
Anadarko Basin on the Colorado-Kansas border to customers in
Colorado and Wyoming and to other Midwest, Southwest and western
Separately Anadarko Petroleum Corp said it shut 600
wells in the Wattenberg field north and east of Denver due to
The Wattenberg field is part of the Niobrara shale formation
in the Denver-Julesburg (DJ) Basin.
"Restarting the activities is expected to be significantly
delayed due to road and location conditions," Anadarko said in a
statement published on its website.
Canadian energy producer Encana Corp shut 397 out
of 1,241 gas wells in the same basin as a result of the
flooding, a company spokesman said.
"That began last Thursday when we started to have heavy
rains and there is no estimate on when these wells will be
brought back into production," Encana spokesman Doug Hock said.
PDC Energy Inc said it had suspended production
from a limited number of its Wattenberg Fields wells.
Synergy Resources said an initial assessment of its
facilities revealed a small number of existing vertical wells
would be offline for an indeterminate period.
On Monday Tisha Schuller, president and CEO of Colorado Oil
& Gas Association, testified before the state's Oil and Gas
Conservation Commission regarding the industry's operational
response to the floods.
In a statement, Schuller said the group had reached out to
all member operators and the majority had little to no impact to
their well sites. Those that were affected were actively
monitoring and working with the Conservation Commission and
The DJ basin was the most significantly affected portion of
the state. "All impacted wells have been shut-in, which means
the well has been closed off or shut and is not producing any
oil and gas product of any kind."
Schuller added that while the rains had subsided in many
areas of the state, some of the most heavily affected areas were
still under a flash flood warning until the end of the day.
Colorado has just over 51,000 active oil and gas producing
wells drilling in the state, according to the Conservation
The state produced 160,000 barrels-per-day of oil in the
first six months of this year, according to data from the Energy
EIA data also showed the state produced 1.64 trillion cubic
feet in 2011, the latest data available.