E-Alert: Louisiana's Dirty 100 Orphaned Oil & Gas Wells
The "Dirty 100" are the 100 orphaned wells that are ranked as having the highest priority for the need of permanent plugging. They are leaking oil or Natural Gas, are currently causing an environmental problem and may also present a hazard or concern to human health and safety. These wells are orphaned wells, which means that the well's operator of record is no longer a viable responsible party. In other words, the companies that extracted minerals from the wells no longer exist so the responsibility of dealing with the wells now rests on the State of Louisiana. The State of Louisiana charges the Oil and Gas industry a fee of one and one-half cents ($.015) for every barrel of oil and condensate produced, and three-tenths of one cent ($.003) for every thousand cubic feet of gas produced which goes to the states Orphaned Well Program . This allows the Louisiana Orphaned Well Program to deal with approximately 160 wells per year. There are currently 2820 wells identified as orphaned wells in need of permanent plugging in the State of Louisiana.