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Derelict Public Land Oil Wells Target of $33 Million Cleanup (1)

May 25, 2022, 5:33 PMUpdated: May 25, 2022, 6:13 PM

The Interior Department will spend $33 million to plug 277 high-priority abandoned oil and gas wells that are polluting the air and water on federal land in nine mostly Eastern states, the agency announced Wednesday.

Wells that were drilled and then abandoned by their owners “jeopardize public health and safety by contaminating groundwater, seeping toxic chemicals, emitting harmful pollutants including methane, and harming wildlife,” said Laura Daniel-Davis, principal deputy assistant Interior secretary for land and minerals management.

The money will plug highly polluting oil and gas wells on federal public lands in Pennsylvania, Kentucky, West Virginia, Ohio, Louisiana, Texas, Oklahoma, ...