MIneral rights spoof or spook?

Ever since the oil and gas boom started in the US, people are starting to get more excited and scared about mineral rights. Now in Idaho, we are experiencing more exploration and drilling for natural gas. 

Don’t get panicked just because you hear rumors about fracking and water contamination, faucets exploding fire coming out of the shower heads etc. Most of this is not true, and is propaganda. Although there may be pollution or land disruption from these activities, it is very heavily regulated by the State and federal agencies including the EPA. There are some things that all home owners should know about mineral rights. 

1. Most mineral rights in the state of Idaho are reserved or owned by the state. Some are still owned by the property or land owner. You can contact Idaho department of lands to find out if you own your mineral rights. 

2. The state of Idaho has laws and statutes about drilling and contamination of ground water etc. Check once again with state and federal agencies about the laws concerning gas and oil exploration. DEQ, EPA, DEPT OF LANDS.

3. The state only allows one well per section in the state. That means only one well per 640 acres. Even if you dont own your mineral rights, and there is gas or oil under your land, the state may share a certain percentage of the revenue with land owners if indeed there is any revenue generated from minerals from your property. The state also has rules about crossing the surface or drilling near homes or outbuildings or wells for domestic or irrigation use. If you are small land owner and a majority of adjacent land owners or state land is being drilled and or leased, you may be required to enjoin in those activities, once again contact your state agencies to find out what is going on if you see activity in our area.

4. There is a lot of misinformation about Fracking. But so far from my research and talking to state agencies and the companies involved, it appears Idaho does not have Frackable soils like they do in the midwest and other areas. So all of the panick about Fracking may be over blown. Once again double check these facts with the proper authorities in your area.

5.  Absolutley All leases should be reviewed by an attorney that is a specialist in Mineral and water rights prior to signing any lease affecting your land. These companies may or may not deal in good faith, so land owners must do their own due diligence and make sure that you know what you are getting into if indeed you decide to enter into a lease for mineral or water rights. These leases may also affect your title policy and your mortgage or ability to get financing in the future.

  Bottom line? Don’t freak out. Contact professionals and experts in the field before you make any decisions so that you are well informed prior to making any moves in the gas or oil arenas. Or contact me and I can put you in touch with professionals in the field.  And don t forget its summer time;  time to get out and enjoy the great outdoors of Idaho!

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