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Railroad Commission of Texas Voluntary Cleanup Program: Introduction and Case Studies of Successful Cleanups

A. E. Beveridge, P.G.
Voluntary Cleanup Program, Site Remediation Section, Railroad Commission of Texas, Austin, Texas

The Railroad Commission’s Voluntary Cleanup Program (RRC-VCP) rule became effective on June 10, 2002. Since then, over 35 VCP applications have been accepted into the program, one third of which have been submitted by oil and gas operators involved in property transactions of historic operations. The VCP offers non-responsible parties the benefit of a release of liability to the state in exchange for a successful cleanup. The RRC has developed tools to assist VCP applicants including guidance for performing Phase I site assessments for oil and gas properties, identifying the location of unplugged oil and gas wells, and evaluating salt-impacted groundwater. Successful oil and gas cleanups, some involving onsite-treatment of waste will be discussed.