What’s Up with K.P. Kauffman?

Why is the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission Scrutinizing this Oil and Gas Operator?

Oil pump to the side of a green meadow with suburban homes in the background.
K.P. Kauffman oil pump near a Front Range residential neighborhood. Photo courtesy of Earthworks.

K.P. Kauffman is a Denver-based oil and gas operator that works in Colorado’s Front Range, Eastern Plains, and North Park areas. There have been 279 spills associated with K.P. Kauffman operations since 2020. The Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC) is running out of patience with delays in their cleanup efforts. In addition, K.P. Kauffman has some of the least productive wells in the state with 1,206 wells averaging less than 1 barrel of oil a day per well. With such low producing wells, it poses the highest risk of bankruptcy and therefore must post “single well financial assurance” to cover the full cost of plugging and reclaiming its wells and well sites. The inadequate financial assurance plan K.P. Kauffman filed with the state is testing COGCC’s “Strongest in the Nation” Financial Assurance Rules.

Breaking News: On Wednesday, February 1, COGCC suspended K.P. Kauffman’s ability to sell oil and gas and is requiring them to promptly pay $1.9 million in fines and clean up 78 production sites. Failure to pay the fine or do the cleanup will result in the company losing its license to operate in Colorado, leaving us taxpayers to clean up their mess.

This interactive map, produced by Rocky Mountain Wild and Earthworks, allows you to see for yourself the location and production of K.P. Kauffman oil wells and the location of the spills since 2020. Rocky Mountain Wild is monitoring financial assurance plans submitted by oil and gas operators in Colorado and will keep you updated on opportunities to engage.