Colorado: New drilling rules aim to reduce noise at oil and gas sites

New drilling rules aim to reduce noise at oil and gas sites by Sharon Dunn, Greeley Tribune, August 18, 2013,
As part of recent rule-making, the state tightened the noise allowances at drilling sites to “light industrial” versus the previous “industrial,” a move regulators say should cut drilling site noise in half. That may signal the end of the hay bales in more populated areas. “We reduced the tolerance for noise by 50 percent in the buffer zone, which is 1,000 feet,” said Ginny Brannon, assistant director of water and energy at the state Department of Natural Resources. Noise is the biggest complaint state regulators say they hear about oil and gas operations. Still, don’t expect to hear only crickets when those drills carve through rock below the surface. “We expect a few phone calls,” said Collin Richardson of Mineral Resources, whose planned 22 wells in the Fox Run neighborhood in Greeley have sparked residential outrage. “It’s not silent, so people will hear it.” [Emphasis added]

[Refer also to:

2007 photos of Encana’s rotting, cheap straw bale wall that did not mitigate the harmful and annoying noise from the compressors about 900 m from the Ernst home. Encana has been violating Ernst’s legal right to quiet enjoyment of her land and home, since 2003.

“EnCana’s rotting straw bale wall around two of these compressors indicates the level of disrespect the company has for the legal rights of Albertans and our environment.”

After the above letter was published in the local paper i8n 2007, Encana immediately torn down their rotting straw bale wall shown in the photos above and installed a new one, that is now also rotting. Encana’s noise consultant advised me that compressor noise is not mitigated by straw or hay walls, the noise travels over them and invades just as it would without the wall.  Such walls are a PR stunt, to make communities believe companies are doing something to mitigate the noise. Noise testing in 2004 proved Encana’s non compliance, the regulator misrepresented the data to enable Encana’s violations of my legal right to quiet enjoyment of my home.

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