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Marcellus Shale

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Curt
Pennsylvanians have a long history of soiling their own nest for the sake of a few bucks.  Willing to destroy the landscape, pollute the rivers and streams and even drink contaminated water as long as they get the bucks to get to Walmart and buy that big flat screen tv or whatever.  If you want to know about gas well fracking, watch the documentary entitled "Gasland".

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Dave Gowdey

It's a disaster.  Contrary to some assertions, oil and gas drilling has NOT coexisted peacefully with wildlife anywhere.  It always causes damage and degradation.  The only question is how much. Here in Louisiana, a good portion of the southern part of the state is dying because of coastal erosion caused by nearly a century of drilling and pushing canals through the marsh.  

Even now there are stories in the Times Picayune from NW louisiana about folks taking the payday and having their their wells get contaminated which seems to happen most places there is fracking.  Of course many of them are not unhappy with the situation because it's a lot of money and they can move.  

I'd also say that if you own the mineral estate under your property - you are in a much better situation than most.  Out west, a lot of the mineral rights didn't go along with the surface rights - and most of those cases prove to be nightmares for the surface owner. It's called a split estate.  They have very little rights to prevent the gas companies from doing what they want.  A lot of ranchers in Wyoming that were initially pro drilling are now adamantly opposed because their wells have been contaminated, their livestock poisoned, and they have lost control of access to much of their property.  

My advice would be that if natural gas drilling is going to be going on on a large scale in the neighborhood of your camp - plan on moving your camp.

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cmc274

I don't think the drillers are the big bad wolf.  99% of them are playing within the rules, however I am not sure I agree with the rules.  There is obviously sufficient profit to fuel the endless leases, mergers and acquisitions, therefore one would assume that the market could bare a higher level of regulation (EPA, DNR, DEP, anyone, etc).  It is a difficult balance between additional revenue and environmental regulation for the state, especially when politicians are involved.  To me, it seems like the drillers got way ahead of the regulators, who did not have a plan in place, now everyone is trying to play catchup.  Last I checked government couldn't catch up to a 3 legged tortoise.

There are still scars throughout the state from strip mines from decades past & present.  Not sure I see a happy ending to the gas situation either.

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Irish Joe

Some of the negative environmental issues have already been mentioned. There are other negatives as well. Negatives that have to do with the very large population of workers that come with gas drilling. Crime in the gas drilling regions of northern PA has risen; murder, assaults, rape, robbery, drugs. Many, many of these companies are turning a blind eye and using illegal immigrants also. The most easily noticed offense is the amount of garbage/trash tossed out along the roads.

Sad, very sad.

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Briarscratch

Joe, did you recall the state of the roads the last time you were up at the NE SXS shoot?   They were absolutely crumbling under the weight of the semis and triaxles.  The roads were narrow enough with out having to worry about running off a collapsed shoulder while another big dump came barrel-assing around the corner.

It's not a Jersey thing or a hand-wringer thing or a environmeddleist wacko thing.  The bottom line is that the fracking boom in PA is running far and fast ahead of any kind of sound regulation or oversight.  Deals were cut, checks have been written and the train has left the station.  Fortunately, people in New York state and other regions have seen the writing on the wall and are organizing.  

I don't care where a person sits politically or what their views on energy policy are. Region-wide environmental and infrastructure degradation in exchange for a few fat lease checks is bad business for both the state of PA and the citizens who live there. This includes their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

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ANF grousin
The Susquehanna does face pollution challenges like many rivers, but they are from pollution run-off from agricultural lands, sewer plant discharges, run-off from urban areas, and fertilized lawns.

All of these real threats to the Susquehanna are stable or declining. For example, in the case of sewer discharges, over a 150 municipal sewer plants discharging to the Susquehanna or tributaries have installed improved pollution controls since 2008 or will be doing so shortly. The amount of poorly treated sewage going into the Susquehanna is declining

Where are the calls for fines from this pollution?

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PartridgeCartridge

Hmmm...

I'm not crazy about Fraking. I'm not crazy about Nuke power either. I'm definitely not crazy about being a pawn of the Middle East for crude oil.

But something has to give or we are gonna have a problem with supplying energy to this country.

I'm definitely not looking foward to burning buffalo chips for heat either.

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Briarscratch

Dave, I completely agree that as a nation we're facing a supply and demand based energy crisis.  However, given that the Delaware River Basin is squarely in the center of NY's marcellus shale region, I have to believe you'd support the appropriate level of regulations and environmental oversight necessary to protect the watershed and aquifer.

MarcellusShaleDRB.gif

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PartridgeCartridge

Dave, I completely agree that as a nation we're facing a supply and demand based energy crisis.  However, given that the Delaware River Basin is squarely in the center of NY's marcellus shale region, I have to believe you'd support the appropriate level of regulations and environmental oversight necessary to protect the watershed and aquifer.

MarcellusShaleDRB.gif

I do support the oversight and regulations. And I'm not crazy about fracking. My point was that sooner or later something has to give, whether its the caribou on the north slope, the prairies in the west or the montains in the east.

Did you know that the quality of the gas discovered in the Marcellus is unprecedented in terms of BTU quality?

It may be THE most significant gas producing formation in the entire world.

That importance and intrinsic value alone is what scares me about the zeal to expoit it.

PS. You and Betsy are welcome to share my buffalo chip fire ring any night.

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Briarscratch

Thanks.  I'll bottle some water to drink now.  

If I'm coming across as a zealot on this issue, it's because I think there's a better way to do it than the way it's currently being done in PA.  Big Gubmint isn't the only boogeyman out there, we as citizens also need to keep an eye on the Corporate Plutocracy and, as you so aptly stated, the "zeal to exploit".

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Tim Frazier

My dad and his neighbors are all getting rich off of this.  They put together a co-op with several lawyers and got a screaming deal directly with Chesapeake.  It will probably put all my kids through college.  

Still if it were up to me I'd do without.  Problem is if you don't contract with them then they just suck it out from underneath your property and pay you a pittance compared to the guy who has a contract.

This will go down as a dark period in our history but with all the money and jobs involved it's a train we won't be able to stop.

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LM Zeke

I'm for energy independence and gas drilling in this country, but only with the proper regulations to ensure our and the lands safty.  Hunting in the prairie I've seen what the drillers are doing to the roads and  land.  It's not pretty.

Our newly elected governor is in gas companies pocket.

Records show that he took over 1 million dollars in campaign monies from them.  Since he has been in office

(app. 5 mths) the fines have dropped.  I don't think the drillers have gotten that much better.

It is my understanding that a lot of this gas is being liquidified and shipped over seas.  So much for energy

indpendence.

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Dave Gowdey

I think the crux of the problem is the lack of effective regulations and oversight.  While the companies scream that there is too much, in reality there is far too little.  Regulations and oversight are often much stricter in other countries, where they still manage to make a tidy profit.  

There are ways to drill for natural gas to reduce the impact on the environment and local communities.  Most of them don't add significant expense.  It's a scandal that the regulators and politicians are so bought and paid for that the abuses so common in the oil and gas industry are allowed to continue.  

However, more importantly, it's time to recognize that these are dinosaur industries.  It is not a question of either domestic production or foreign oil (all production goes into an international market - it doesn't stay where it's produced). It's a question of moving beyond the stranglehold these industries have on our government and economy before we kill the planet.  The technologies already exist to do this - it's corruption and greed that prevent it.

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Bob Frankenfield

Here's a link to the existing and planned drilling in PA.

http://maps.tnc.org/PAenergy/

It's ugly.  It's changed the landscape and the people.  It sucks.  They'll be here for at least 30 years.  You're screwed if your water well gets polluted.

There's a well pad 300 yards from my house and within 10 yards of my property line.

Boom Town Baby.

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drummer's stump
Here's a link to the existing and planned drilling in PA.

http://maps.tnc.org/PAenergy/

It's ugly.  It's changed the landscape and the people.  It sucks.  They'll be here for at least 30 years.  You're screwed if your water well gets polluted.

There's a well pad 300 yards from my house and within 10 yards of my property line.

Boom Town Baby.

Bob

You and Joe are welcome to come here any time you wish, in the last month I have found more cover than I could hunt in 3 years. So if it gets real bad, back your bags,steal Riley and come on up. I would say bring Mark along, but I have a hard time finding enough Guinness for my self. There is no way I could find enough for the two of us.

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