Oregon Statutes - Chapter 522 - Geothermal Resources - Section 522.215 - Suspension of drilling or operation; application; terms; extension; presumption of abandonment; unlawful abandonment; notice; proceedings against operator.

(1) No operator shall suspend drilling or operation of a geothermal well without obtaining permission from the State Department of Geology and Mineral Industries.

(2) The department may authorize an operator to suspend for a specific period operations or remove equipment from an uncompleted geothermal well upon such terms as the department may specify, upon written application of the operator and an affidavit showing good cause therefor.

(3) Within a period of six months from the ending date specified for such suspension, the operator may make written application for an extension of suspension, and file it with an affidavit showing good cause for such an extension. Upon a finding that the extension is merited, the governing board of the department may extend the suspension for an additional specific period.

(4) If, after suspension, operations are not resumed by the operator within six months from the ending date specified for the suspension or extension thereof, an intention to abandon and unlawful abandonment shall be presumed.

(5) Whenever an operator whose operations have been suspended fails to comply with such terms as the department may specify in its authorization, the geothermal well shall be presumed unlawfully abandoned. A well shall also be deemed unlawfully abandoned, if, without notice to the department, any drilling or producing equipment is removed.

(6) An unlawful abandonment shall be declared by order of the board, and written notice thereof shall be mailed by registered mail or by certified mail with return receipt both to such operator at the last-known post-office address of the operator, to the registered agent of the operator, if any, and to the operatorís sureties.

(7) After declaration of unlawful abandonment, the board may proceed against the operator and the surety of the operator as provided for in ORS 522.145 and may bring suit pursuant to ORS 522.810. [1975 c.552 §16; 1981 c.694 §9; 1991 c.249 §39]

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Last modified: August 7, 2008