State auditor meets with oil and gas producers about Orphan Well Program

Ohio's state auditor met with oil and gas producers to discuss the Orphan Well Program.
Published: Sep. 8, 2022 at 5:05 PM EDT
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MARIETTA, Ohio (WTAP) - Ohio’s state auditor stopped by Dominion Energy to meet with oil and gas industry officials this Thursday. They discussed the recent performance audit of Ohio Department of Natural Resources’ Orphan Well Program.

The Orphan Well Program’s goal is to shut down wells with unclear ownership in order to prevent pollution.

Auditor Keith Faber said, while the program has plenty of money, it lacks efficiency.

The audit developed strategies for officials to get more wells closed for less money at a faster pace.

Faber said including input from oil and gas producers is an important step moving forward.

“..., because they’re the people who are going to go out and get those contracts to close those wells. Those are the people who go out and do the orphan well closures and so they need to be available - they need to give the input on how they can best do their work.”

Faber said his office is giving suggestions to ODNR based on industry input and consumer input.

He said they are going to identify and close many wells in Washington County.