DOE officials say no to San Juan/Chama well sites

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County > White Rock drilling may still be in play

By The Staff

 Los Alamos Department of Public Utilities was notified by the Department of Energy that it was not able to grant an easement or right of way on proposed DOE sites for well drilling or construction.
Responding to DPU’s request to develop the 1,200-acre feet of San Juan-Chama water on DOE land in lieu of county property in White Rock, DOE stated in its Jan. 29 letter that the proposed sites were not feasible due to safety, security, cultural and environmental concerns.
The letter, written by Los Alamos Site Office acting manager William J. White to county administrator Harry Burgess, said, “there are a number of cultural sites that would require costly mitigation actions and consultation with the state and tribal governments.
“At this point, the government is not able to grant an easement or right of way for well sites proposed for the San Juan/Chama Project.”
A September 2012 preliminary engineering report prepared by CDM-Smith assessed five options and the feasibility of each for DPU to develop its San Juan-Chama surface water right under contract with the Bureau of Reclamation.

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