Saturday, April 17, 2010

Eleven Variances

I was searching for some news to post and ran across an article about Corinth Texas. I decided to post the variances requested by XTO instead of the article itself. These seem like some pretty basic responsibilities to be requesting variances for. To read the full article, click here.


XTO Energy has asked for 11 variances to drill for natural gas at Lake Sharon Christian Center.

* To allow a $25,000 bond or check per well in lieu of a letter of credit to pay for road damages.

XTO has said it’s against company policy to issue letters of credit. Council member Randy Gibbons has said a letter of credit is counted as a liability in a company’s balance sheets.

* Reduce the setbacks to allow drilling within 300 feet of a protected use.

XTO claims it has received waivers from the Lake Sharon Christian Center and nearby residences and discloses that one of the protected uses — one of the buildings at the center — is 200 feet from its operations.

* To not require a chain-link fence around the drill site.

XTO has said it will install a noise fence, which is not penetrable, on three sides of the pad site. The company said it would consider a chain-link fence on the north side, but it is not preferred.

* To drop the requirement that the area within 300 feet of the drill site be kept free of weeds, trash and debris.

XTO has said part of that perimeter is in the city’s right of way, and it cannot go there without the city’s permission.

* To drop the requirement that drilling fluids be contained in pipelines at all times, including for movement to a disposal well.

XTO has asked that it be able to temporarily store fluids on site until they can be trucked to a disposal well.

* Reduce the setbacks to allow a tank battery within 100 feet of a protected use.

XTO claims it doesn’t have enough space on the well site to meet this requirement.

* Reduce the setbacks to allow waste disposal tanks within 100 feet of a protected use.

XTO claims it doesn’t have enough space on the well site to meet this requirement.

* To allow a lift compressor station.

XTO claims it doesn’t know whether the well will produce without one.

* To drop the masonry fence requirement.

XTO claimed the cost — about $75,000 — would not create the screening that could be affected by a “living” screen the company would rather install, and would make it more difficult to re-enter the site for additional operations. Manthei has told the council it could drill as many as five to 18 more wells at that site.

* To drop the tree mitigation requirement

XTO claims it would cost $1 million to comply with this requirement, making the site too expensive to develop.

* To drop the requirement to disclose the pipeline route for the site

XTO claims it is too expensive to secure the easements without knowing whether it will be permitted to drill.