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O. Reg. 22/00: EXPLORATION, DRILLING AND PRODUCTION

filed February 3, 2000 under Oil, Gas and Salt Resources Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. P.12

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ONTARIO REGULATION 22/00

made under the

Oil, gas and Salt Resources Act

Made: February 2, 2000
Filed: February 3, 2000

Amending O. Reg. 245/97

(Exploration, Drilling and Production)

1. (1) Section 1 of Ontario Regulation 245/97 is amended by adding the following definition:

“private well” means,

(a) an unplugged well drilled for the purpose of oil or gas exploration or production on land of which the operator owns both the surface and mineral rights, and

(b) if oil or gas is produced from the well, the oil or gas,

(i) is for the operator’s private use,

(ii) is not used in relation to a business or commercial enterprise, and

(iii) is not sold by the operator;

(2) The definition of “Provincial Standards” in section 1 of the Regulation is revoked and the following substituted:

“Provincial Standards” means the standards set out in “Oil, Gas and Salt Resources of Ontario Operating Standards”, published by the Ministry, as amended from time to time;

(3) Section 1 of the Regulation is amended by adding the following definition:

“spud”, with respect to a well, means the commencement of actual drilling of the well’s surface casing hole using a cable tool or rotary drilling rig, but does not include activities to prepare a site for drilling the well, including installing a conductor pipe;

2. (1) The heading preceding section 3 of the Regulation is revoked and the following substituted:

Well Licences

(2) Section 3 of the Regulation is revoked and the following substituted:

 

3. (1) A well licence expires on the first anniversary of its date of issue, if the well was not spudded before that date.

(2) The authority to drill that is granted in a well licence terminates on the earlier of,

(a) the TD date of the well; and

(b) the first anniversary of the date of issue of the licence.

(3) The authority to deepen a well that is granted in an amended well licence terminates on the earlier of,

(a) the TD date of the drilling to deepen the well; and

(b) the date specified as a condition on the amended well licence.

(4) If drilling is in progress on the date referred to in clause (2) (b) or (3) (b), the operator may continue drilling the well to its proposed total depth but such drilling shall not continue beyond the date that is 90 days after the date referred to in clause (2) (b) or (3) (b).

(5) An operator shall not drill or deepen a well beyond the depth permitted by the well licence unless the operator has applied for and obtained an amendment to the well licence permitting the new depth.

(6) An operator shall not drill a new deviated or horizontal well from an existing well unless the operator has applied for and obtained a well licence for the new well.

(7) The depth permitted by a well licence or amended well licence after the well’s TD date shall be deemed to be the depth of the well attained on the TD date unless the well is plugged back, in which case the depth permitted by the well licence or amended well licence shall be deemed to be the plugged–back depth.

(8) Where information on a well licence or amended well licence differs from the well licence information on file with the Ministry, the well licence information on file with the Ministry shall be deemed to be the correct well licence information.  

3. Sections 4 and 5 of the Regulation are revoked and the following substituted:

4. The holder of the well licence shall forthwith notify the Minister in writing of any change in the well’s drilling program and location supplied on the well licence application, the accompanying drilling program and the well location plan and shall not drill or continue drilling unless the Minister approves the change.

5. (1) The operator of a well shall pay a well licence fee on or before February 15 of each year, based on the Table to this section.

(2) The fee is payable to the Oil, Gas and Salt Resources Trust.

(3) The payment shall accompany the Annual Well Status Report.

TABLE

Item

Type of Well or Storage

Fee

1.

Private well

$0 per well

2.

Active gas well

$0.09 per 103m3 gas produced during the previous calendar year

3.

Active oil well

$0.18 per m3 oil produced during the previous calendar year

4.

Natural gas storage

$75 per well

5.

Observation wells

$10 per well

Item

Type of Well or Storage

Fee

6.

Salt cavern storage well

$150 per well

7.

Solution mining wells

$150 per well

 

4. Sections 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 and 13 of the Regulation are revoked and the following substituted:

Registration of Works

7. (1) In this section,

“production facility” means any work used in association with a well to,

(a) produce oil or gas,

(b) store oil, gas or other hydrocarbons in a geological formation,

(c) dispose of oil field fluid in a geological formation, or

(d) conduct solution mining.

(2) The operator of a well shall notify the Minister within 15 days after any change in the following:

1. The name, address or telephone number of the operator, operator’s agent, if any, or any emergency contact persons.

2. The status of the well.

(3) The operator of a production facility shall submit to the Minister, within 30 days after completion of the production facility, a scaled drawing or map showing,

(a) the name, address and telephone number of the operator, operator’s agent, if any, and emergency contact persons;

(b) the location of each work in the production facility by tract, lot, concession and geographic township; and

(c) a list of the type, quantity and operating status of each work in the production facility, including storage tanks or pits, heaters, treaters, separators, compressors, flares and pipelines, and a brief description of the technical specifications of each such work.

(4) The operator of a production facility shall submit revised information to the Minister within 15 days after any change in the information required to be submitted by subsection (3).

Spacing Requirements for Oil and Gas Wells — General

8. (1) This section applies to all oil or gas exploratory and development wells.

(2) Unless otherwise specified by the Minister, oil and gas well spacing units shall be comprised of,

(a) quarter tracts for wells drilled into but not below a formation of Devonian age; and

(b) whole tracts for wells drilled into or below a formation of Silurian age. 

(3) No person shall,

(a) drill a well in a spacing unit that has not been pooled;

(b) produce oil or gas from a spacing unit that has not been pooled; or

 

(c) produce oil or gas from more than one well in a spacing unit.

(4) If an area is unitized by a voluntary agreement among the oil and gas interest owners within the area and the Minister agrees with the unitization, or if an area is unitized by an order of the Commissioner, the Minister shall revoke or amend any pooling conditions on licences for wells located in the unitized area, and may, as the circumstances of the unitized area warrant, do one or both of the following:

1. Waive the requirement under section 11 to establish spacing units.

2. If the unitized area is subject to a spacing order, amend the spacing order to remove the spacing units from the unitized area.

Spacing Requirements for Oil and Gas Wells
not Subject to a Spacing Order

9. (1) This section and section 10 apply only to oil or gas exploratory and development wells that are not subject to a spacing order of the Minister.

(2) An exploratory or development well that is drilled into but not below a formation of Devonian age shall be,

(a) in a spacing unit comprised of a quarter tract; and

(b) located within the target area not closer than 61 metres to any boundary of the spacing unit.

(3) An exploratory or development well that is drilled into but not below a formation of Silurian age shall be,

(a) in a spacing unit comprised of a whole tract; and

(b) located within the target area not closer than 107 metres to any boundary of the spacing unit.

(4) An exploratory or development well that is drilled into or below a formation of Ordovician age shall be,

(a) in a spacing unit comprised of two whole tracts that are,

(i) adjacent to each other, and

(ii) located within the same lot; and

(b) located within the target area not closer than 107 metres to any boundary of the spacing unit.

10. (1) The Minister may issue a well licence for an exploratory well that is proposed to be drilled outside the target area if topographical, geological or other conditions make drilling a well within the target area unfeasible.

(2) If the Minister issues a well licence for an exploratory well under subsection (1), clauses 9 (2) (a) and (3) (a) and  subclause (4) (a) (ii) do not apply to the well and the Minister shall specify the spacing unit for the well as a condition of the well licence.

spacing order

11. (1) Any person having oil or gas rights in respect of a pool may apply to the Minister for an order to establish spacing units.

(2) If an operator discovers a pool of oil or gas on land and production of the oil or gas is possible, the operator shall apply to the Minister for an order to establish spacing units within 130 days after the TD date of the discovery well, unless otherwise instructed by the Minister.

(3) An application for a Minister’s order to establish spacing units shall be accompanied by,

(a) a plan of the land comprising the probable area of the pool showing,

(i) the location of the discovery well in relation to the boundaries of the land, roadways and topographical features of the area, and

(ii) the names of all persons having a working interest or a royalty interest in respect of the pool, the type of interest held by each and the property boundaries of each; and

(b) a technical report of,

(i) the geology of the discovery,

(ii) the type of reservoir,

(iii) the production and reservoir drainage capability of the discovery well and any subsequent well drilled into the pool, and

(iv) the geological and engineering rationale for the size and location of the proposed spacing units.

(4) The applicant shall send, by regular prepaid mail, notice of the application together with a copy of the plan of the land described in clause (3) (a) to the persons mentioned in subclause (3) (a) (ii) within five days after making the application.

(5) Except where the Minister has otherwise approved, no person shall drill a development well into a pool referred to in subsection (1) until a spacing order is issued.

12. The Minister may establish spacing units in a water–covered area.

Spacing Requirements for Oil and Gas Wells
Subject  to a Spacing Order

13. (1) This section applies only to oil or gas exploratory and development wells that are subject to a spacing order of the Minister.

(2) An exploratory or development well that is drilled shall be located in the target area of the spacing unit specified by the spacing order.

(3) The Minister may issue a well licence for an exploratory or development well that is proposed to be drilled outside the target area if topographical, geological or other conditions make drilling a well within the target area unfeasible.

(4) If the Minister issues a well licence for an exploratory or development well under subsection (3), subsection (2) does not apply to the well and the Minister shall specify the spacing unit and target area for the well as a condition of the well licence.

(5) The spacing unit and target area for a well specified on the well licence as provided in subsection (4) apply in respect of that well despite any spacing order, whether the spacing order was issued before or after the well licence was issued under subsection (4).

5. (1) Section 16 of the Regulation is amended by adding the following subsections:

(1.1) The trustee of a trust fund referred to in clause (1) (b) must be,

(a) a bank to which the Bank Act (Canada) applies;

(b) an insurance company, or a fraternal benefit society, to which the Insurance Companies Act (Canada) applies;

(c) an association to which the Cooperative Credit Associations Act (Canada) applies;


 

(d) a co–operative credit society incorporated by or under an Act of Ontario;

(e) a trust, loan or insurance corporation incorporated by or under an Act of Ontario;

(f) a brokerage firm incorporated or formed by or under an Act of Canada or of Ontario that is primarily engaged in dealing in securities, including portfolio management and investment counselling;

(g) an accountant licensed under the Public Accountancy Act who carries at least $2,000,000 of professional liability insurance; or

(h) a lawyer qualified to practise in Ontario who carries at least $2,000,000 of professional liability insurance.

(1.2) The trustee of a trust fund referred to in clause (1) (b) shall not be the operator of any well that is secured by the trust.

(2)Subsection 16 (2) of the Regulation is amended by striking out “clause (1) (b)” at the end and substituting “this section”.

(3)Clause 16 (3) (b) of the Regulation is revoked and the following substituted:

(b) $0 for each private well;

(4) Subsection 16 (6) of the Regulation is revoked and the following substituted:

(6) The operator shall not adjust the security without the Minister’s consent.

6. (1) The heading preceding section 17 of the Regulation is revoked and the following substituted:

Well control and Blowout Prevention

(2) Section 17 of the Regulation is amended by adding the following subsection:

(3) The operator shall ensure that the well does not flow uncontrolled.

7. Section 22 of the Regulation is revoked and the following substituted:

22. A tag attached to a work under section 7 of the Act shall be in a form approved by the Minister.

8. (1) Subsection 23 (3) of the Regulation is revoked and the following substituted:

(3) A Class II examiner may examine works with respect to oil and gas production and disposal wells.

(2) Section 23 of the Regulation is amended by adding the following subsection:

(7.1) Subsection (7) does not apply to examinations required to be conducted by the Provincial Standards on a daily or weekly basis.

9. The Schedule to the Regulation is revoked and the following substituted:

Schedule

tracts