Summary: H.R.4017 — 108th Congress (2003-2004)All Information (Except Text)

There is one summary for H.R.4017. Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Introduced in House (03/23/2004)

Western Waters and Farm Lands Protection Act - Amends the Mineral Leasing Act to require operators producing oil or gas (including coalbed methane), to: (1) replace water supplies affected by drilling; (2) reinject water produced by drilling into the aquifer from which it was extracted or one of no better quality; and (3) submit water management plans along with their lease applications.

Amends the Federal Water Pollution Control Act to require pollution discharge permits for the production of oil or gas and permit stipulations to minimize adverse effects from the disposal of extracted waters.

Prohibits the Secretary of the Interior from authorizing exploration and drilling operations on lands where title to oil and gas resources are owned by the United States but the surface estate is owned by a non-Federal entity unless: (1) an agreement has been reached with the surface owner (with the possibility of arbitration); or (2) the operator has made a good faith attempt to secure such an agreement and meets other specified requirements.

Requires the Secretary to give surface owners advance notice of lease sales.

Requires operators to meet specified reclamation standards for lands affected by oil or gas production and to post reclamation bonds.

Directs the Secretary to: (1) develop a Federal remediation program for abandoned wells drilled to explore or develop Federally owned minerals or located on Federal lands; and (2) establish a technical assistance program for States and Tribes addressing environmental problems caused by abandoned wells on other lands.