Oil and gas producers in Arapahoe County, Colo., this week narrowly escaped a six-month moratorium on all new drilling. The 3-2 vote against a temporary ban is a sizeable victory for operators in the D.J. Basin amid an onslaught of more regulations and several fronts to end the state’s production of fossil fuels altogether.

Reese Energy Consulting today is following the latest decision by Arapahoe County commissioners that has cleared the path for producer native Civitas, which plans to drill 174 wells on 60 square miles of land owned by the Colorado State Land Board. Dubbed the Lowry Ranch Drilling Project, the site was used during WWII as a bombing range for military training and has since been uninhabited. Born of the 2021 merger between Extraction Oil and Gas and Bonanza Creek and their acquisition of Crestone Peak Resources, Civitas early on announced its intention to become Colo.’s first carbon-neutral energy producer—a goal it’s achieved in short order. Now the state’s largest pure-play E&P, the company operates 500,000 net acres in the D.J., producing 169.4 MBOEPD. Civitas in February announced 4Q revenues of $814.3 million, 416 MMBOE in proved reserves, and a $1 billion stock repurchase authorization.