Capping an abandoned or dry well is an important part of the oil well industry. Unfortunately, it does not seem to be well understood – or well done. EcoHearth published an article in August 2011 claiming that there were 2.5 million abandoned wells in the US alone, many of which are leaking sludge into the environment.
When a well is considered dry or unprofitable, it is supposed to be “permanently capped.” New caps are probably much better than older caps, but it seems that much more attention has been given to locating wells, drilling wells and even maintaining them than to capping them off when the owning entity is finished with them.
This phenomenon has given rise to several consequences. An obvious one is land owners who retrieve their property after it has been leased to an oil company filing suit for damages to the land and water. Another is that the slow seeps are too small to become obvious ecological disasters, but still affect wildlife and water supplies around them.
In light of this, it makes excellent environmental and business sense to revisit these old wells and to see if they can be put back into production. Clearly, if they have enough oil there to seep, there may be enough to produce a barrel or two using modern methods. At the very least, revisiting the old wells would give a training ground for learning to properly cap unused wells. Perhaps this knowledge could be used to prevent the next large disaster.
Alfaro Oil and Gas, led by Alfaro Oil & Gas President, Brian K. Alfaro, treats each drilling location with the utmost respect and when prospecting a location where a partner company can drill, they do so with due diligence and structured procedures. This practice is part of Alfaro Oil and Gas’ unwavering commitment to excellence in responsibility dependability, reliability, and quality in services.