IOGCC tackles domestic oil and gas issues at Midyear Issues Summit

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Contact:  Erica Carr  405-525-3556 ext.106erica.carr@iogcc.state.ok.us

IOGCC tackles domestic oil and gas issues at Midyear Issues Summit

Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission (IOGCC) member governors and representatives focused on key issues affecting the conservation and efficient recovery of the nation’s natural gas and oil resources during its Midyear Issues Summit in Point Clear, Ala.

Commission Chairman Gov. John Hoeven, of North Dakota, addressed participants during the meeting’s general session on the status of several key IOGCC initiatives vital to the organization’s 37 member states. The governor highlighted in particular the commission’s continued commitment to environmental protection and the importance of an effort to secure federal funding for the plugging of orphaned wells in the states.

“There are believed to be tens of thousands of orphan wells in this country,” said Hoeven. “Many of these wells are very shallow and pose no risk to the environment. However, there are others that are unplugged or inadequately plugged and are a genuine threat to the environment and safety. We have focused on these problem wells and are working with Congress on federal funding for a permanent fix.”

In addition, Alabama Gov. Bob Riley emphasized the importance of domestic production, both on and offshore.

In other business, Hoeven signed to renew a memorandum of understanding with the U.S. EPA presented by Associate Administrator for Intergovernmental Relations Randy Kelly. The MOU, also signed by EPA Administrator Stephen Johnson, has been held since 2002 and was created to improve regulatory cooperation among the states and the EPA, to promote protection of the environment in a cost-effective manner, to minimize regulatory duplication between the state and national levels of government and to increase efficiency and communication.

The IOGCC, representing the governors of 30 member and seven associate states, promotes the conservation and efficient recovery of the nation’s oil and natural gas resources while protecting health, safety and the environment. Established by the charter member states’ governors in 1935, it is the oldest, largest and most effective interstate compact in the nation. For more information, visit www.iogcc.state.ok.us.