RAFI is currently participating in the Mining and Energy Commission’s Compulsory Pooling Study Group to examine “compulsory pooling” and recommend potential regulations to protect landowners from having their property taken for private gain.
What is Forced Pooling?
Forced pooling, known as “compulsory pooling” in North Carolina, gives states the right to compel a non-consenting landowner into a mineral rights lease. In most states, this requires that a certain percentage of surrounding land already be leased.
In North Carolina there are few legal protections for a landowner in the event of compulsory pooling. The state does not have a regulatory structure governing a compulsory pooling process.
- For more details on forced pooling see our Forced Pooling 101 video.
- View our slideshow presentation providing an overview on forced pooling.
The Mining and Energy Commission’s Compulsory Pooling Study Group
In July of 2012, the North Carolina legislature ratified the Clean Energy and Economic Security Act. Also known as Senate Bill 820 (Session Law 2012-143) this law,charged the Commission with developing a “modern regulatory program” for the management of oil and gas exploration and development activities in North Carolina, including the use of horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing.
- Click here to view the Compulsory Study Group meeting schedule.
- Click here to view the Objectives of the Compulsory Pooling Study Group
Because of the compulsory pooling provisions in the new law, RAFI and other advocates are concerned about the potential threats to landowner rights. The“Compulsory Pooling & Landowner Protections,” presentation embedded below provides an in-depth analysis of the issue. The presentation was authored by RAFI consultant John Humphrey and presented at the Compulsory Pooling Study Group’s meeting on January 11, 2013.