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Company to sell natural gas wells in W. Idaho

A company that produced what appear to be commercially viable natural gas wells in western Idaho has announced that it’s selling its Western Idaho Basin project.

The Idaho Statesman reports that Bridge Resources Corp. and its partner, Paramax Resources Ltd., plan to sell the project that includes the Willow and Hamilton Fields near New Plymouth.

“We’ve already had some strong interest from parties even prior to today’s announcements,” Nick Clayton, chairman of the board and acting Bridge CEO, said Nov. 4.

He said the company has hired Meagher Energy Advisors to review alternatives, and that selling the assets will allow the fields to be developed.

The company in 2010 found the natural gas after drilling 11 wells in Payette County, causing Idaho officials to start developing new rules governing such operations, including hydraulic fracturing.

State officials in April approved rules to allow four wells per square mile, more than the previous standard of just a single well, and set parameters for hydraulic fracturing. That’s a process to clear out blockages formed by drilling mud and trigger the flow of natural gas.

That process has been blamed for water pollution in places like Colorado, Wyoming and Pennsylvania. Idaho, which previously hasn’t had to consider commercial natural gas wells, is a late-comer to regulating the natural gas industry compared with other Rocky Mountain states.

Bridge Resources said that it has acquired the majority of the state and county permits for the drilling operation, including a conditional-use permit for a 13-acre site where a compression and dehydration facility would be built.

The company also said it has obtained most of the easements for an 8.5-mile pipeline that goes under the Payette River.

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