AP NEWS

Colorado firm to pay fine over unauthorized drilling

July 24, 2019 GMT

DENVER (AP) — The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Colorado says a Greeley oil and gas firm has agreed to pay a fine over claims it didn’t seek a federal lease or permit before drilling on U.S.-owned land.

The office said Wednesday that Mineral Resources Inc. will pay more than $210,000 to settle the claims.

It says the firm didn’t seek permits from the U.S. Bureau of Land Management before drilling an oil and gas well in a Weld County railroad right of way in 2012. Mineral deposits there are owned by the federal government.

A BLM lease to pay for the minerals is required. A BLM permit also is required to drill in such situations.

A U.S. attorney’s statement says investigators didn’t determine the incident was willful.

Mineral Resources didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.