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Number of orphan wells skyrockets in Alberta

The number of abandoned wells in the province has jumped 45 per cent over the past three months. The Orphan Well Association had a list of 768 so-called orphan wells at the end of March. That number has since spiked to more than 11-hundred.

The association manages the plugging and wellhead removal from non-producing wells. It serviced a record 185 wells in its last fiscal year, which is an increase of 330 per cent over the year before.

However, the association says it still can’t keep up with demand. Also on the docket are 744 well sites in need of surface reclamation and 895 pipeline segments to be abandoned.

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