Touring the Jonah Field – Part I
Last fall I had the exciting opportunity to tour the Jonah Field, hosted by our friends at Encana Oil and Gas, USA. The Jonah Field is located south of Pinedale, Wyo. It covers about 30,000 acres and has resulted in millions of dollars in tax and royalty revenues for federal, state and local funds.
In learning more about the Jonah Field I found these articles interesting: The Jonah Field and Pinedale Anticline: A natural-gas success story by Ann Chambers Noble (whom I met on the tour and found to be a wonderful wealth of historical information) and The Jonah Story on the Bureau of Land Management website.
We began the tour at the Sublette County Visitor’s Center. There we loaded on buses and headed to the safety office.
While there, we also heard about the latest oil and gas exploration effort being undertaken – the Wyoming Normally Pressured Lance (NPL). Encana’s Randy Phillips talked extensively about these efforts, the government standards and procedures they must maneuver through and the latest technologies that will be used in the NPL to produce more oil and gas with less impact on the environment. I’ll talk more about this in another post.
While at the safety office it seemed fitting that we go through safety training. They explained all the practices and procedures we needed to adhere to while in the field. Then they gave us some stylish safety outfits and accessories to wear. I think they were designed for the runways of Paris and New York.
After all the great discussion we were all anxious to get in the field. We dressed up on all our PPEs and FREs (personal protective equipment and fire retardant equipment) and headed to a Central Delivery Point (CDP). Aren’t acronyms fun?
Many different natural gas wells are delivered to a CDP. Here the gas, oil and water are separated. From there the gas and oil is transported through pipelines to buyers across the country and the water (which is a natural byproduct) is used in fracking. Using CDPs helps Encana stay efficient, reduces emissions and creates less disturbance to the land.
There is a meter house that is the point of custody and after the oil and gas pass by the meter it officially is owned by someone else.
The tanks hold the separated oil and water.
Each well is operated off of solar panels and are monitored by computer. Employees also periodically check and monitor each well and each CDP to ensure everything is running correctly.
We did a lot more on the tour and I look forward to sharing more in the weeks to come, so keep checking back!
From Liz Lauck, Wyoming Stock Growers Association