State Lawmakers Increase ODNR Budget for Plugging Wells

From The Times Reporter:
The Ohio Department of Natural Resources is revving up its program to plug oil and gas wells that were left behind by their owners. 
State lawmakers more than doubled the plugging program’s budget earlier this year to $15 million. 
ODNR plans to plug 173 wells this fiscal year, and has entered contracts to plug 55 of those wells at a cost of $3.6 million since July 1. 
ODNR spent $6 million to plug 83 wells last fiscal year, a price tag and number of wells that were records for the plugging program, which has been around since the mid-1970s. 
The new funding has allowed the program to put together a robust plugging plan, said Steve Irwin, spokesman for ODNR’s Division of Oil and Gas Resources Management. 
“It’s exponential growth headed in the right direction,” Irwin said.
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