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Stakeholder Issues Play Key Role in Shale Future

Photo courtesy of Anadarko.
(From left) Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper; Anadarko Vice President of Rockies Operations Brad Holly; Encana President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Doug Suttles; Noble Energy President, Chairman, and CEO Chuck Davidson; and Environmental Defense Fund President Fred Krupp discuss Colorado’s new fugitive-methane emission rules at the Vail Global Energy Forum in Beaver Creek, Colorado.

As the shale revolution changes the map of oil and natural gas development and shifts the balance of production between regions, public acceptance is an increasing challenge. The unconventional resource boom has brought intensive drilling and production operations to areas often unaccustomed to these activities and frequently more populous than traditional petroleum development areas.

A variety of public concerns have assumed a high profile, including the environmental issues of water use; perceived risk to groundwater aquifers; waste disposal; truck traffic, dust, and noise; and emissions.

While the success of production from shales and other tight-rock formations draws attention nationally and globally, its future depends much on the attention and reception it receives locally. As shale drilling has surged, public eyes may be more focused on the community impacts of oil and gas operations than ever before.

Some jurisdictions have imposed moratoria or even bans on the use of hydraulic fracturing, which is an essential component of the success of shale development. The risk of similar measures and additional restrictions spreading to other areas is real. There is increasing industry recognition of the need to reach out to communities, share information, and listen to stakeholders.

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Stakeholder Issues Play Key Role in Shale Future

Joel Parshall, JPT Features Editor

01 November 2014

Volume: 66 | Issue: 11

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