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WAC 332-22-230

Geothermal resources lease—Unit plans.

(1) The holder(s) of any geothermal resources lease may apply to the department to consolidate their leaseholding for geothermal resources with other entities, including lands not owned by the state, to collectively adopt and operate as a unit under a unit plan. Such consolidation will not serve to extend the term of the lease and all participants must agree to continue payment of royalties provided in the lease through the life of the unit and any extensions of the plan.
(2) When separate geothermal resource rights under lease cannot be developed and operated independently in accordance with an approved well-spacing or well-development program, the commissioner or the commissioner's delegate may require lessees to enter into a unit plan or drilling agreement with other entities when it is in the best interest of the state.
(3) As a condition for authorization to be part of a unit plan, the commissioner or the commissioner's delegate may alter the terms and conditions of the lease(s) so involved when it is in the best interest of the state to do so, and such authorization may be further conditioned upon, but not limited to the following:
(a) Department access to reports and documents it deems necessary, at the sole discretion of the department, to determine if consolidation of the proposed unit plan is in the best interest of the state.
(b) Leaseholds which are only partially included in the unit shall be segregated into separate leases as to the lands committed and not committed as of the effective date of the unitization. The annual rental or minimum annual royalty shall be paid on the leased acreage in the unit independently from other segregated lease areas.
(c) Any apportionment of production or royalties among the separate tracts of land comprising the unit shall include an accounting system, and the department shall have the right to audit such system to protect the interests of the state.
(d) None of the rights of the state as landholder shall be limited or subordinated.
[Statutory Authority: Chapter 79.12 RCW, as amended by ESB [EHB] 1277 and RCW 79.01.242. WSR 92-06-003, § 332-22-230, filed 2/20/92, effective 3/22/92.]
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