Texas Tech University

Increased oil patch activity can magnify legal issues

Midland Reporter-Telegram

April 10, 2020

Midland Reporter-Telegram - Attorneys focused on energy law are working to keep up with the changes wrought by the Permian Basin's unconventional oil and gas development.

"It's the largest gathering of oil and gas lawyers and landmen west of Interstate 35," said Bill Keffer, professor of energy Law and director of the Energy Law program at Texas Tech University's School of Law. Mineral interest pooling is the only version of forced pooling that exists in Texas, Keffer said, and it is beginning to be increasingly used in areas such as Pecos in Reeves County where operators are drilling laterals under the town. "People not voluntarily signing up for pools are being lost to history," he said. Unless mineral interest pooling is used, drilling operations would have to be suspended because "those people don't exist anymore."

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