After acquiring thousands of net acres of new leasehold assets from another operator, a top Colorado oil and gas producer was ready to begin its first development project in a new community, by completing previously drilled but uncompleted wells. The goal was to introduce the company as an innovative operator committed to going above and beyond what’s required in order to produce energy responsibly, while safeguarding public health, the environment and quality of life.
The rapid expansion of communities in Colorado’s Front Range alongside long-standing mineral leases has led to land-use conflicts, and a changing state regulatory environment has raised the stakes for operators. Against this backdrop, the company sought to “get off on the right foot” with residents in a new community before completions began, but these plans were complicated by three factors:
The company partnered with Linhart PR, which has extensive experience in community engagement for the energy and utilities sectors, to host a telephone town hall (TTH) for its new neighbors. This format provided a safe, convenient way for residents to connect with the energy company and begin a dialogue. Key aspects of the telephone town hall included:
Residents and elected officials participated in the telephone town hall and shared positive feedback post-meeting. The leader of an informal oil and gas community watch group had this to say:
“I can’t thank you enough for using the format you did and answering with respect and patience. The neighbors I spoke with afterwards only had positive things to say, so hats off to you. It is a relief to be working with an oil and gas company that stands behind their commitment to listening to and responding to neighbors' concerns.”
The company achieved its goal of starting on the right foot with new neighbors, and completions on the four-well pad got underway without incident.