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Colorado oil and gas commission considering increased setbacks near schools

FILE–In this Aug. 16, 2018, file photo a pump jack works in a recently-constructed residential development in Frederick, Colo. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski, File)

DENVER (AP) – Colorado oil and gas regulators are considering a change that would enlarge the mandatory buffer zone between new wells and school property.

A proposal released Wednesday would require new wells to be at least 1,000 feet (305 meters) from buildings as well as outdoor areas that schools use, such as playgrounds and athletic fields.

Current rules require the same size buffer but measure it from school buildings, not outdoor areas. That allows wells to be closer to outdoor facilities.

Regulators could still allow wells closer if areas outside the buffer zone are deemed to be technically infeasible or economically impractical. School officials could also agree to allow wells within the buffer zone.

The Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission will consider the rule at a hearing Dec. 17 and 18.

(Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Associated Press

Associated Press

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