Pressure Testing and Initial Flowback about to Begin at Interchange A and B Pads

The City and County of Broomfield announced on its Oil and Gas webpage this afternoon that, “Extraction Oil and Gas will be pressure testing production equipment at Interchange A prior to the initial flowback of the 10 wells at Interchange B beginning on Oct. 1, 2019. Oil, gas, and produced water will go into pipelines with excess water going into temporary tanks to be trucked off.”

The City’s announcement also states that about 29 truck trips per day will be needed. Flowback for each well takes about 2 -4 days for a total of 20-40 days.

Upset conditions are of most concern during the flowback stage. The Operator Agreement specifies on p. 33 that:

“D. Temporary flowback flaring and oxidizing equipment where allowed shall include the following:

1. Adequately sized equipment to handle 1.5 times the largest flowback volume of gas from a vertical/directional and/or horizontally completed well respectively as reported to the COGCC in a ten mile radius;

2. Valves and porting available to divert gas to flaring and oxidizing equipment; pursuant to the above Rules 40 CFR 60.5375 & COGCC Rule 805;

3. Auxiliary fueled with sufficient supply and heat to combust or oxidize non-combustible gases in order to control odors and hazardous gases. The flowback combustion device shall be equipped with a reliable continuous ignition source over the duration of flowback, except in conditions that may result in a fire hazard or explosion; and

4. The Operator has a general duty to safely maximize resource recovery and minimize releases to the atmosphere during flowback and subsequent recovery/operation.”