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June 14, 2014

Local organization discussed oil and gas developments

CHICKASHA — Oklahoma Corporation Commissioner Dana Murphy spoke about the oil and gas industry in the state during a meeting of the Grady County Mineral Owners Association Thursday.

Grady County leads the state in number of cross unit well applications with 58, followed by Stephens County, according to the OCC.

Murphy said the corporation commission has regulatory powers over transportation, oil and gas, petroleum storage tanks and public utilities in the state.

"If you look directly or indirectly, [the OCC] is the most economically powerful agency in the state," Murphy said. "Now we're being asked to deal with earthquake issues that we've never had to deal with before."

The majority of wells being drilled in the state are being drilled horizontally, she said.

In December 2013, 146 of the 229 wells completed were horizontal wells, as opposed to vertical or directional, and 176 were for oil, as opposed to gas or dry wells, according to the OCC.

In 2013, 1,917 completed wells were horizontal and 746 were non-horizontal, according to the OCC.

"More and more wells are being drilled horizontally. It's not so much that you're going to make a well, it's the quality of the well," Murphy said. "Our goal was to protect fresh water, now we're being asked to deal with earthquake issues that we never had to deal with before."

The commission has the ability to request reports and records about hydraulic fracturing or chemical treatment on any well.

Wells hydraulically fractured on or after Jan. 1, 2013 and other wells hydraulically fractured on or after Jan. 2014 are required to be filed with the FracFocus registry. and the Conservation Division District Office or field inspector must have 48-hour notice of hydraulic fracturing, according to the OCC.

Dick McCalla of the Grady County Mineral and Surface Association said Murphy's presentation gave insight about activity at the commission, as well as oil and gas activity in Grady County.

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