Resolute Aneth LLC using 3,000 PSI for water injection to recover oil and gas on Navajo Reservation

Here at Navajo Council’s Resources & Development Committee, where RDC is now on LEGISLATION 0170-14: An action relating to Resources And Development; Approving The Granting Of A Right-Of-Way To Resolute Aneth, LLC, To Construct, Operate And Maintain The Ratherford Unit 10-12 4.5” O.D. Welded Steel Water Injection Pipeline And Associated Ancillary Facilities On, Over And Across Navajo Nation Trust Lands (San Juan County, Utah)
Sponsor: Hon. Roscoe D. Smith, Council Delegate
RDC CHAIRPERSON ROSCOE D. SMITH
part of our discussion yesterday was concern of Navajo Nation authorizing outside entities to have Rights-Of-Way and RDC creating assets and turning those assets into dollars that return to Navajo Nation. With Resolute, about a third of Resolute’s interest belong to Navajo Nation Oil and Gas Company so how do we bring those dollars to Navajo Nation. And based on information yesterday, Dec. 15, 2014, there was understanding of the intent of Navajo Nation. Legislation 0170-14 will be presented by Resolute administrator Rodall.

RESOLUTE STAFFER ROGER ETCITTY

RDC MEMBER LEONARD PETE
Says here that Navajo Nation will contribute $30,136 for benefit to Navajo people but how many Navajo people will benefit? Is this waiver tht we are approving worth $36,000?

RDC MEMBER LEONARD HASKIE
What kind of injection pressure are we talking about?

RESOLUTE, ROGER ETCITTY
3,000 PSI

RDC MEMBER LEONARD HASKIE
this amount if pressure is very high. The public is always interested in something like this, 3,000 PSI, which is very unusual and dangerous.

RDC VICE CHAIRPERSON ROSCOE SMITH
for technical questions, i will refer to agenda. but realize that Navajo Oil and Gas is part of partnership with activities of Resolute and NOG has 30 percent interest in resources developed by Resolute. So when talking about benefits to Navajo Nation then where would NOG play role in development of oil and gas so these considerations have to be made and understood. The essence is this is Navajo Nation property, resources and employment of Navajo people. Taking all of that into consideration and the best use of resources need to be considered.

RDC MEMBER LEONARD PETE
AMENDMENT – fee of $30,136 will be paid by Resolute within ten days of approval of Right-of-Way. there will be no waiver. and Navajo Nation will not pay $30,136.
RDC VOTES ON AMENDMENT, 4 IN FAVOR, 0 OPPOSED

RDC MEMBER LEONARD TSOSIE
what is public purpose of $30,136?

RESOLUTE, RODALL
OPPORTUNITY for people for employment, produce resource to bring economic value, taxes and royalties, Navajo Oil and Gas’s share.

RDC PETE
To measure success is not about how many little heads you step on. It is how you successfully work with small businesses, especially small Navajo-owned businesses.

RDC MEMBER LEONARD HASKIE
I’m still concerned about the amount of pressure being injected into ground.

Is this water injection process fracking?

RESOLUTE, RODALL
Greater Aneth field are three fields and have been developed without fracking. so water injection is secondary recovery method and regulated by EPA so max injection pressure so don’t fracture.

RDC MEMBER LEONARD TSOSIE
so you are pumping water to force oil out. how many feet below. i don’t see formation chart or strata. i’m not saying i oppose fracking but issue with some communities. and are communities aware of what Resolute is doing? and are you taking water from one area to another area? a chart would show that

RESOLUTE, RODALL
since 1960s, Resolute has been using a water reservoir that is 5,500 deep. there was well with problems and we fixed that well. using about 60 wells and this is replacing line to one of those and to new well. using water and injection requires injection permits and those permits are in place to protect underground water for drinking. when working on well, we have to have cement across certain water wells.

RDC LEONARD TSOSIE
how long?

RESOLUTE, RODALL
when most field drilled, say there are 25 year life and when life approaches then better technology. but some fields cud go another 15 years and we cud consider for CO2 flood.

RDC CHAIRPERSON KATHERINE BENALLY
We have been tabling many Rights-Of-Way because we support Navajo Oil and Gas doing development instead of outside companies. All our enterprises are our advisors and we expect them to advise.

RDC MEMBER LEONARD PETE
i am concerned about injecting water deep into ground and at a very high pressure. So how much oil is being taken out. if start taking out took much water versus oil then that becomes costly. and what is oil and water start mixing. I’m concerned that using more water then retrieving oil. and who pays for contamination of water? a concern across reservation is contamination of groundwater. but the possibility of contaminated water going into another aquifer is of great concern. and that concern came when uranium contaminated water.

RDC CHAIRPERSON KATHERINE BENALLY
I’m going to meet with Controller Mark Grant and Chief Legislative Counsel Levon Henry on Bond Financing Legislation.

RDC also plan to create Regulatory Team by legislation to oversee oil and gas activities The Team members are proposed to be NOSHA, Navajo Tribal Utility Authority, Minerals Department, Navajo Division of Economic Development Business Regulatory Office, others cuz no monitoring out in Aneth oil and gas fields.

At the beginning of today’s RDC meeting, one of the Reports before the RDC involved Resolute Aneth LLC. CHAIRPERSON KATHERINE BENALLY summarized a very lengthy meeting yesterday between Navajo owned businesses and Resolute. The Navajo owned companies accused Resolute of unfair business practices and not compling with Navajo Preference in Business Law. Benally summarized yesterday’s meeting by saying, yesterday, we heard from two Navajo owned companies regarding Resolute Aneth, LLC, which conducts oil and gas drilling operations in the Aneth, Utah, area. The companies heard that the Resources & Development Committee would be taking action on a request from Resolute in the end an agreement reached. handwritten agreement. we had it on record and legislative staff will read. Resolute will give consideration to LGB and Dine Resources Inc. There was understanding that there was loss of money, respect, credibility due to damage done by Resolute and LGB wanted financial compensation. and agreed to get that done outside of written agreement yesterday, Dec. 15, 2014.
RDC VOTES ON REPORT. 3 IN FAVOR, 0 OPPOSED

RDC VICE CHAIRPERSON ROSCOE SMITH
There was proposal from RDC for Rights-Of-Way to involve Navajo Oil and Gas.

RDC MEMBER LEONARD TSOSIE
Mr. Rodall, can this Right-Of-Way wait? And this coming at end of year and when legislation is not acted on then legislation dies. And then there is a new Council coming in. And then there might not be enough votes for your ROW to be approved and so this legislation will die anyway.

RDC MEMBER LEONARD HASKIE
Whether we favor or not, our decision-making ability is exhausted in three weeks. Secondly, going back to water consumption, is it a closed system and the water can be reused? And then there is no concern about over-using water. Where in the tertiary process of recovering oil, how much is recovery percentage? 20 percent? 30 percent? or miniscule?

RESOLUTE, RODALL
all fields are at different levels of maturity and this Rafford is very new. if we choose to use CO2, then take from 35 percent to 45 percent. and when near end then there cud be new technology and the recovery cud be higher. Resolute is operator of Lease in Field and Lease stays with field and so if Navajo business or Navajo Nation steps in then Lease stays with federal units/land, if Resolute goes away.

RDC MEMBER LEONARD TSOSIE
So would it be okay if RDC tables Resolute’s requests Rights-0f-Way for Legislation 0170-14 and Legislation 0367-14. I’m concerned about water flooding process that Resolute uses. I’d like geological chart from Resolute and water flooding process. And by delaying one week, I don’t feel that RDC jeopardizing $30,000 which is probably peanuts to Resolute.

RDC MEMBER LEONARD HASKIE
water not really issue. the issue is $30,000 and other revenues that could be lost to tribal government.

RDC VICE CHAIRPERSON SMITH
not to stop development of Navajo’s interest, which is Navajo Oil and Gas…

RESOLUTE TRIBAL LIASION ROBERT BILLY WHITEHORSE
Resolute has asked RDC to tour Aneth oil and gas fields.

RDC MEMBER LEONARD PETER
I think that RDC Chairperson Benally mentioned that there would be special RDC meeting on Monday, Dec. 22, 2014, at 1 pm. There is a Navajo Nation Council special session on Dec. 23, 2014.
MOTION TO TABLE UNTIL MONDAY, DEC. 22, AT 1 PM
VOTE IS 3 IN FAVOR, 0 OPPOSED. It is now 2:28 pm

RDC ALSO TABLES SIMILAR RESOLUTE RIGHT-OF-WAY REQUEST/LEGISLATION 0367-14, WITH VOTE OF 4 IN FAVOR, 0 OPPOSED.

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