The first oil well in North America was drilled in 1858 near Oil Springs, Ontario, Canada. Today, over 135 years later, Union Gas Limited is using cable tool rigs to drill natural gas storage wells within a 30 kilometer radius of that first well.

Union's storage pools are located in Lambton County, Southwestern Ontario, Canada (Figure 1). Lambton County is approximately 5,600 hectares (560,000 acres) of which 88% is actively farmed. There are over 3000 farms located in this area, and it is Union's priority to minimize environmental damage to these agricultural lands during well drilling activities.

This paper discusses cable tool drilling as an alternative to rotary drilling, and examines the environmental, reservoir, and operational advantages of cable tool drilling natural gas storage wells.

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