State regulars halt quick, oral OK for drilling

By: AP
By: AP

Casper, WY (AP) - The Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission has stopped giving expedited oral approvals for drilling permits, citing more applications and more complicated requirements.

The Casper Star-Tribune reported Friday oral approval could come in as little as 20 minutes if the application showed all the steps were complete. It typically took 30 to 60 days for written approval.

The Petroleum Association of Wyoming, which has argued for streamlining the process, says it's unclear if the decision will slow things down or speed them up overall.

The Powder River Basin Resource Council, a landowners group, welcomed the change. The group says the increase in applications might be caused by drillers rushing for approval in case regulators require greater distance between wells and residences.

The current 350-foot requirement is under review.

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