Kentucky to receive nearly $104M to clean up abandoned wells

February 3, 2022 GMT

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — Kentucky will receive almost $104 million in federal funding to help clean up abandoned oil and gas wells around the state, officials said.

The funding will come from the Department of the Interior through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, state and federal officials said.

Cleanup activities will help improve air and water quality while creating Kentucky jobs, U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell said Wednesday in a statement.

“This is a problem in nearly every county, but until now, our local governments have not had the funding required to complete cleanup projects on a large scale,” McConnell said. “With today’s funding announcement, Kentucky communities will have the necessary resources to launch new cleanup projects and create Kentucky jobs.”

There are more than 14,000 documented orphan wells in Kentucky, and new ones are found regularly, Gov. Andy Beshear said.

“This grant will allow us to make great progress in locating and capping these abandoned wells,” he said.