The provisions of this chapter shall be liberally construed so as to effectuate the following purposes:
1. To foster, encourage and promote the safe and efficient exploration for and development, production, utilization and conservation of the Commonwealth’s gas and oil resources;
2. To provide a method of gas and oil conservation for maximizing exploration, development, production and utilization of gas and oil resources;
3. To recognize and protect the rights of persons owning interests in gas or oil resources contained within a pool;
5. To maximize the production and recovery of coal without substantially affecting the right of a gas or oil owner proposing to drill a gas or oil well to explore for and produce gas or oil;
6. To protect the citizens and the environment of the Commonwealth from the public safety and environmental risks associated with the development and production of gas or oil; and
7. To recognize that use of the surface for gas or oil development shall be only that which is reasonably necessary to obtain the gas or oil.
1982, c. 347, § 45.1-290; 1990, c. 92.