September 28, 2009
In Reply Refer To:
3160 (310) P
Instruction Memorandum No. 2009-219
Expires: 09/30/2010 

To:                       All Field Officials

From:                   Assistant Director, Minerals and Realty Management

Subject:               Data Entry Procedures and Policies for Re-Entry of Abandoned Oil and Gas                                 Wells and Re-Use of API Numbers

Program Area:  Oil and Gas Management.
Purpose:  This Instruction Memorandum (IM) provides field offices (FO) with Automated Fluid Minerals Support System (AFMSS) data entry guidelines and procedures to follow when an abandoned oil and/or gas well is re-entered.
Policy/Action:  The attached procedures are to be followed when performing data entry into AFMSS in regard to abandoned wells that are re-entered (re-drilled). Other methods were explored, but data is overwritten causing many other problems with data integrity. NOTE: This issue has nothing to do with recompletions in a wellbore or wells that are side tracked to correct a downhole issue.
Timeframe:  Effective immediately. 
Budget Impact:  This IM has no budget impact.
Background: We are experiencing situations where old, plugged and abandoned wells are being re-drilled (re-entered). The original well bore was plugged to the surface, the surface restored, and the Plug and Abandon (P+A) approved by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). Most of these wells are in AFMSS, but show the well status of P+A. To re-enter this well bore, the operator submits a new Application for Permit to Drill (APD) for re-entry. The state where the well is located re-assigns the American Petroleum Institute (API) number for this well and does not issue a different number. AFMSS already shows the well data with the original API number, usually with a completion code of S1, but does not allow re-use of the API number for the new re-entry APD.  AFMSS was designed to prevent duplicate entry of API numbers, but this poses a problem in entering the new re-entry APD. The existing API number assigned to the old well cannot be duplicated in AFMSS for the re-entry well.
Manual/Handbook Sections Affected:  None.
Coordination:  This IM was coordinated with the AFMSS Project Change Management Board and WO-310.
Contact:  If you have any questions concerning the content of this IM, please contact me at
202-208-4201, or your staff may contact Carol Larson at 406-233-3655 or Paul Brown at
Signed by:                                                                   Authenticated by:
Michael Nedd                                                               Robert M. Williams
Assistant Director                                                        Division of IRM Governance,WO-560
Minerals and Realty Management
1 Attachment