Call to Action: Urge Your Legislators to Support Orphan Well Prevention Act
By Lucia Valentine, WVEC Lobbyist
There are currently over 6,500 orphaned wells across the state of West Virginia. These wells were left behind by the oil and gas industry, leaving taxpayers responsible for the costs to plug them.
Not only is this an economic liability, but these orphaned wells also pose a major threat to landowners’ property rights, to the environment and to the public health of the communities in which they are located. Often these wells continue to leak not just gas but liquids, including toxic chemicals, polluting the air and water. Methane leaks from these wells help fuel the climate crisis by contributing to increased climate related weather disasters like the severe flooding already happening here in West Virginia.
Plugging orphaned wells will be a win for our economy, environment and public health!
What Can You Do? Urge your legislators to address this crisis without gouging taxpayers. Please email your lawmakers (see sample message below)!
- Advocate for plugging orphaned wells by filling out our Volunteer Survey! We’ll match you with meaningful opportunities based on your interests and availability.
- Read HB 2852 here.
- For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Please email Senate and House Energy Committee members! Copy and paste our Call to Action Email:
I am concerned about the growing number of orphaned oil and gas wells across West Virginia.These wells pose a threat to landowners’ property rights and the health of our environment and communities. Cleaning up orphaned wells will spur economic development, increase property value, clean up the air and water, and reduce the harmful emissions that leak from these wells and contribute to climate change.
We must prevent wells from becoming orphaned in the first place by passing the Orphan Well Prevention Act, which requires companies to deposit funds for plugging their wells up front before they begin drilling. It’s time to prevent the oil and gas industry from passing along this economic burden to West Virginia taxpayers should they abandon or orphan their wells.
Plugging orphaned wells will be a win for property rights, our economy, environment and public health!
Senate Energy Emails (Copy and paste into your email recipients)
House Energy Emails