DENVER (AP) – Officials say an oil well that blew out of control in northern Colorado sprayed at least 28,000 gallons of oil, gas and drilling waste water onto surrounding land.
Anadarko Petroleum Corp. has been redirecting the fluids into permanent production equipment since Friday’s blowout, which temporarily closed two roads.
Colorado natural resources spokesman Todd Hartman says the Texas-based oil company lost control of the well near Hudson when a crew was in the process of producing from the well.
Workers were able to direct the fluids into tanks the following day.
Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission staffers have been on site working to evaluate any environmental impacts.
Anadarko spokeswoman Robin Olsen says the company is also assessing the impacts and will report its findings to the commission.
Meanwhile, in nearby Boulder County, Colorado Attorney General Cynthia Coffman is threatening to sue Boulder County if it doesn’t repeal a moratorium on oil and gas development in unincorporated areas by Feb. 10.
The Longmont Times-Call reported Thursday Coffman cited a 2015 Colorado Supreme Court ruling that only the state can regulate the industry, not local governments.
The county commissioners planned to meet in closed session to discuss Coffman’s threat.
The county has had a moratorium in place since 2012, extending it several times. Commissioners voted in December to extend until at least May 1 while they revise the county’s oil and gas regulations.
In a letter to the commissioners, Coffman calls the moratorium a ban and says she suspects the county will keep it in place beyond May 1.
She calls it “clearly unlawful.”