Residents are trying to block disposal well in Oklahoma

Landowners in Garvin County are trying to block a Tulsa company's bid to operate a disposal well for up to 50,000 barrels of oil-field wastewater in their area.
by Jay F. Marks Published: August 24, 2012
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He said the listed capacity for the disposal well is an arbitrary figure that is common for such projects. It gives companies flexibility to cover contingencies.

Most of the wastewater to be injected into the well will arrive via pipeline, Langhus said, after several landowners had complained of the truck traffic needed to deliver 50,000 barrels of water to the site.

Langhus also said the proposed well's proximity to the Washita River's floodplain should not be an issue since it will be protected by a two-foot berm.

Pauls Valley resident Charles Menefee expressed concern the CAVU well would endanger the area's water supply.

“There's one thing we can't life without. That's water,” he said. “We can't drink saltwater.”

Area landowner Ian Ogilvie questioned the Tulsa-company's viability, claiming CAVU's financial statements show it is in “terrible” shape.

CAVU attorney Cheri Wheeler objected to the “offensive adjectives” the Oklahoma City portfolio manager used in his testimony, but the judge allowed Ogilvie to share his thoughts on the company.

“The company says ... it's making money, that it has income,” Ogilvie said. “That statement is misleading at best.”

The former securities lawyer said CAVU is owned by a succession of general partners meant to shield it from judgments. “People need to know this,” he said. “If you go after these folks there's nothing there.”

After the end of Thursday's testimony, CAVU CEO Bill Robinson defended his company, which operated 67 producing wells and four disposal wells in Oklahoma. He said the company has been around since 2001 and has focused on oil and gas since 2009.

The hearing continues Friday at the Corporation Commission.

by Jay F. Marks
Energy Reporter
Jay F. Marks has been covering Oklahoma news since graduating from Oklahoma State University in 1996. He worked in Sulphur and Enid before joining The Oklahoman in 2005. Marks has been covering the energy industry since 2009.
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