This letter is in response to Shelley Brock regarding the development of oil and gas in Idaho (Feb. 3 letter).
Oil and gas has been efficiently produced in the United States for more than a century. In Idaho the industry is just a couple of years old and is in its infancy. The Idaho Oil and Gas Conservation Commission is charged with regulating the industry to limit waste of the resource, while also protecting water supplies and the rights of mineral owners.
Idaho’s geology and the types of oil and gas reservoirs found so far have only required conventional drilling. There has been no hydraulic fracturing and no applications for hydraulic fracturing for the 24 drill permits issued since 2009. The key to protecting our groundwater with all methods of oil and gas development is proper casing and cementing of wells, and proper fluid containment and disposal. We have the rules in place to ensure those elements are done properly — rules that were negotiated with multiple interests in a very public process.
We encourage Idaho residents to reach out to the Department of Lands to gather information. Informational materials are available the website at idl.idaho.gov/oil-gas/regulatory.
Sharla Arledge, Boise