OIL AND GAS INDUSTRIALIZATION OF IDAHO:
POSSIBLE BENEFITS FOR A FEW, TROUBLE FOR MANY OTHERS
A beautiful refuge on the Boise River in Ada County, already leased for future drilling and potential hydraulic fracturing, along with the next 38 river-miles all the way to the Oregon border, plus another 92 river-miles of the Payette and Snake Rivers in Idaho
CAIA has been educating the citizens and our public officials since 2015 about the problems associated with a developing gas & oil industry in our midst. Leasing of oil/gas ‘mineral’ rights has been underway in Idaho since 2006, with much concomitant varnished-truth lobbying by the industry of State legislators, local officials, and news sources.
There are many problematic elements involved in this heavy industrial process, particularly when it is set down in suburban neighborhoods, as is often the case. From seismic testing through development of the resource to abandonment of a well, there are many points along the way that represent negative impacts to residents (as well as cities, counties, and the State). Beyond possible (if a well plays out as hoped) financial benefit, and minor leasing income, citizens must shoulder the burdens of jeopardized mortgages and insurance policies, traffic congestion and road degradation, any environmental harms that result, and much of the cost of remediating abandoned wells, to name a few (and not considering community ills should the industry take off in a big way).
There are, as of late 2019, a total of 19 drilled wells (8 active) in Payette County, other wells approved there and in SE Idaho, and hundreds of thousands of acres of state, federal, and private holdings leased to a few small out-of-state energy companies – and now largely in the hands of a single one whose parent company has entered bankruptcy. Seismic testing and/or leasing has been hot and heavy at various times in Payette, Gem, Ada, and Canyon Counties, in both rural and suburban areas. Still, to date, the State of Idaho has spent far more on this industry than it has received in return.
CAIA supporters have since 2013 been involved in the effort to develop protective local Oil & Gas Ordinances, and from that learning process has come CAIA’s Model Ordinance which we have shared with many cities and counties across the state. In 2018 and 2019, the first Idaho cities, Fruitland and Eagle, codified O&G ordinances that are improvements on those implemented by a handful of counties prior to that.
CAIA has also gone to bat multiple times in the legal arena for citizens in Payette County who have been forced by the State to lease the minerals underlying their properties. The articles in the FLASH NEWS banner at the top of each page tell about our legal efforts – and wins. (See FINANCIAL IMPACTS below for information on forced pooling, or ‘integration’, as well as on split estates, where property holders own only surface rights and have no say on whether the mineral rights under them are leased… and perhaps on whether some surface rights are granted to gas & oil developers just a few hundred feet away from their homes. Note that Idaho law does not require real estate agents or property sellers to inform buyers of this!)
The ramifications of oil & gas* development are many, and we’ve hit the highlights for you in a few pages on this website…
*(Oil and gas are found together, usually with one predominating – but both may be extracted, separated, and sold from a single well.)
BELOW ARE INFORMATIVE PAGES TO CHOOSE FROM:
AND SEE ALSO THE ‘Model O&G Ordinance’ PAGE
Harms to pets/stock/wildlife
Dangerous industry-related jobs
Public health/safety costs
Quality of life
Air and soil pollution
Fracking/no fracking is moot
Do you have property rights??
Lease snags and negotiation
On public lands as well
What about alternatives?
Hidden costs/liabilities to cover
‘Forced pooling’ and you
What are ‘split estates’?
Loss of homes/values