People in Garvin County are calling it a victory, as Tulsa-based CAVU Energy Services Inc. announced Tuesday it would withdraw its application for a wastewater disposal well near Paul Valley.
The proposed well drew opposition from hundreds of Garvin County residents who were convinced it would cause an ecological disaster.
More than 1,300 people signed a petition opposing CAVU's application, which was being considered by the Oklahoma Corporation Commission.
CAVU said Tuesday it has acquired a new disposal well location in southern Kansas, home of the prolific Mississippian oil play.
“The economic and logistical advantages to this new location eliminate the need for the commercial disposal well in Garvin County,” the company said in a news release.
Wynnewood resident Joe Menefee said he was glad to hear the company was moving on from its contentious plans for Garvin County, where his family has owned land since 1903.
“They had no business coming here in the first place,” he said. “I'm extremely relieved and glad it's over.”
Menefee said CAVU's proposed disposal well was close to four homes east of Pauls Valley. The operation would have ruined their property values, while wreaking havoc on nearby roads, he said.
Road upgrade would be costly
Garvin County Commissioner John Mann estimated it would cost about $1.3 million to upgrade county roads to accommodate truck traffic that would come with a commercial disposal operation.
CAVU said that expense was among the issues that would have reduced the economic return on the project.
William Robinson, president of parent company CAVU Resources Inc., has high hopes for the new disposal well in Kansas. Equipment from the Garvin County site will be moved to an existing disposal well there.
CAVU expects the Kansas disposal site to be up and running in less than 120 days.
“The major drilling programs that have started in the Kansas area are producing large quantities of saltwater and have an immediate need that exceeds our projections in Garvin County,” Robinson said. “The timing and long-term potential of this area should provide the investors with revenues from this decision before the end of the year.”
CAVU is withdrawing its application for a commercial disposal well in Garvin County, along with a separate application for a private disposal well.
Menefee said Garvin County is not a good location for such wells because of its long history with the oil and natural gas industry.
Menefee said that energy industry veterans have indicated Garvin County is home to more than 80 unplugged wells dating back to the 1930s, making disposal operations like the one CAVU had proposed especially risky.