Draco Map

We’ve created a detailed map showing the proposed Draco wellbores and their potential interaction with existing oil & gas infrastructure, not least of all because they’re not yet available on the ECMC GIS Online map. For more information about this drilling proposal, visit our Draco FAQ.

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Coyote Trails FAQ

An aerial image of the Coyote Trails drilling pad, from a Channel 7 News article.
An aerial image of the Coyote Trails drilling pad, from a 2018 Denver Channel 7 News article.

tl;dr
Extraction Oil & Gas intends to drill an additional 18 wells at the Coyote Trails pad in unincorporated Weld County, just outside of Erie, Colorado. We are working diligently with other organizations, the Town of Erie, and the City and County of Broomfield to prevent this Application for Permit to Drill (APD) from being approved. Most recently, their APD was denied by the ECMC Commissioners in a 4 to 1 vote during a January 24th, 2024 commission hearing. The operator will most likely resubmit their application with additional information, the timing of which is unknown.

We’ll be updating this FAQ as we get additional information from the various involved parties. Where possible, links to additional/source material have been provided.

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ECMC Complaints Analysis

As complicated and difficult as it can be to submit a complaint to the ECMC (fka COGCC) about an air quality, noise, or odor issue at an oil and gas facility in Colorado, the number of complaints lodged with any location is a good measure of the negative impact that oil & gas exploration has in our neighborhoods. With data obtained from the ECMC, here’s a data table showing the sites that logged more than 20 complaints of any kind since 2010.

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ECMC Coyote Trails Form 2 Testimony

On Wednesday, January 24th, the Colorado Energy & Carbon Management Commission (ECMC) made the unusual move of hearing an application to drill (APD) at the existing Coyote Trails facility in unincorporated Weld County, just northeast of the Vista Ridge development in Erie.

Below is the testimony given by Erie Protector’s Editor in Chief, Christiaan van Woudenberg.

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Draco FAQ

We’ll be updating this FAQ as we get additional information from the various involved parties. Where possible, links to additional/source material have been provided.

What is fracking?

From the NRDC:

“Modern high-volume hydraulic fracturing is a technique used to enable the extraction of natural gas or oil from shale and other forms of “tight” rock (in other words, impermeable rock formations that lock in oil and gas and make fossil fuel production difficult). Large quantities of water, chemicals, and sand are blasted into these formations at pressures high enough to crack the rock, allowing the once-trapped gas and oil to flow to the surface.”

For more information, visit:
Hydraulic Fracturing 101 at Earthworks.org
Fracking 101 at the NRDC (the Natural Resources Defense Council)

Where is the Draco pad?

The proposed Draco pad is located northwest of CR 6 and CR 7 at the Crestone Hub. View on Google Maps.

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How much water does fracking use, Part VI

In Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, and Part V of this series, we showed that each hydraulic fractured well permanently poisons millions of gallons of water.

Once again, the Erie community is under assault with the 26-well proposed Draco pad and an additional 18 wells proposed to be drilled at the Coyote Trails pad. Let’s look at the data for the Cosslett East wells, completed in September 2023.

A total of 178,725,812 gallons of water were used to drill these wells, with a median of 13,261,197 gallons per well. This is 18.4% less than the median water use for the original Cosslett wells, but without completion information for these wells (the data is not yet available at the ECMC), it’s not obvious why. For reference, here is a visual representation of the two sets of directional wellbores:

A comparison of the directional wellbores for Cosslett (left) and Cosslett East (right).

Once the completion data for the Cosslett East wells becomes available, we’ll update this analysis.

See also:

How much water does fracking use, Part V

In Part I, Part II, Part III, and Part IV of this series, we showed that each hydraulic fractured well permanently poisons millions of gallons of water.

Now that Occidental is fracking the wells at Mae J and Papa Jo / Shumaker, there’s a renewed interest in the amount of water used by hydraulic fracturing, so let’s take a look at the 12 wells drilled at the Cosslett pad by Crestone Peak Resources.

By using more water than any other pad we’ve examined in this series, it’s once again worth saying out loud:

Crestone Peak Resources has used one hundred seventy-five million, five hundred thirty-four thousand, six hundred and seventy-four gallons of water to frack the twelve wells at Cosslett.

A total of 175,534,674 gallons of water, with a median of 16,252,811 gallons per well. It sounds like we’ll expect Occidental to use a similar quantity of water to drill the 12 wells at Mae J.

See also:

How much water does fracking use, Part IV

In Part I, Part II, and Part III of this series, we showed that each hydraulic fractured well permanently poisons millions of gallons of water.

Now that the data for the drilling at Broomfield’s Interchange B pad has become available from FracFocus, a quick calculation shows Extraction Oil & Gas has used 81,837,881 gallons of water to frack the 10 wells at the Interchange B pad.

Once again, let’s say it out loud:

Extraction Oil & Gas has used eighty-one million, eight hundred thirty-seven thousand, eight hundred eighty-one gallons of water to frack the ten wells at Interchange B.

Extrapolating to the remaining 74 wells to be drilled, we’re expecting Extraction to use just over 600 million gallons of water on this project. Note the difference between the water used for the C wells in the Codell formation versus the N wells in the Niobrara formation.

We’ll keep you posted of the water usage as Extraction progresses with their comprehensive drilling plan.

See also:

How much water does fracking use, Part III

In Part I and Part II, we showed that each hydraulic fractured well permanently poisons millions of gallons of water. This week a new Duke University study was released, claiming “the amount of water used per well for hydraulic fracturing surged by up to 770 percent between 2011 and 2016 in all major U.S. shale gas and oil production regions.”

Since it has been a while since we’ve gathered this data from FracFocus, a quick calculation shows Extraction Oil & Gas has used 102,044,434 gallons of water to frack the 10 wells at the Coyote Trails pad just east of Erie, Colorado in unincorporated Weld County.

Once again, let’s say it out loud:

Extraction Oil & Gas has used one hundred two million, forty-four thousand, four hundred and thirty four gallons of water to frack the ten wells at Coyote Trails.

Keep in mind that these 10 wells are just the beginning; 4 Form 2s have already been approved and another 24 are pending for this location.

See also: