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Ohio Utica Shale

Delaware, N.Y., completes baseline methane testing

By Bob Downing Published: June 21, 2013

A press release received Thursday from the Damascus Citizens for Sustrainability:

Methane Baseline Testing Completed in Town of Delaware, NY

Callicoon-Gasland Part 2 Announces Donation to Testing Initiative

Milanville, PA -- Jun 20, 2013 / ( -- Methane baseline testing was conducted in the Town of Delaware (NY) the first week of June 2013 and the groups that sponsored Gasland Part 2 in Callicoon, NY are proud to have contributed financially to this crucial assessment.

"Baselines are very important. They establish how much of a chemical or gas or other substance is (or isn't) present in the air, water and human bodies in a particular area. This methane baseline testing was conducted on every public road in the Town of Delaware and establishes one factor in the environment (local methane levels) and others can be added, but this one is done." said B. Arrindell, Director of Damascus Citizens for Sustainability (DCS) who coordinated the testing.

Trish Adlesic, Gasland Part 2's Producer, has been working with Delaware Town residents and DCS to get the study underway. "Delaware Concerned Citizens began raising money to do baseline testing over 5 months ago and we are thrilled that the testing has been done," she said.

The methane baseline data that was collected in early June is being analyzed now. "The report on the findings will be completed in two to three weeks, but preliminary results look nice and low," said Bob Ackley, President of GasSafetyUSA, who conducted the testing.

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, "Methane … is more efficient at trapping radiation than [carbon dioxide]. Pound for pound, the comparative impact of [methane] on climate change is over 20 times greater than [carbon dioxide] over a 100-year period…. Natural gas and petroleum systems are the largest source of methane emissions from industry in the United States."

"The Callicoon showing of Gasland Part 2 was a free and educational collaboration of Catskill Citizens for Safe Energy (CCSE), Catskill Mountainkeeper and Damascus Citizens and it was a huge success in many ways," said CCSE's Jill Wiener. "We packed the theater on a Saturday morning in a small river hamlet and thanks to the outpouring of donations from the audience, we were able to contribute to the crucial and very timely methane baseline testing in the Town of Delaware."

Wes Gillingham of Catskill Mountainkeeper reminded residents that, "It's important to obtain a baseline before hydraulic fracturing activities begin in a particular area. The Picarro testing method used by GasSafetyUSA measures methane in parts-per-billion and has been validated by previous court rulings so we're especially grateful for these efforts on behalf of our communities."

"Clearly Damascus Citizens has the right idea in doing a baseline methane survey," said Gasland's Director, Josh Fox. "We are learning now that methane is constantly emitted into the atmosphere in huge quantities in drilling areas. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) study of Utah's Uinta Basin found that 9% of the total methane produced by drilling was emitted to the atmosphere. In the Los Angeles Basin, drilling and transmission leaks amounted to 17% of total methane production. If the gas industry were ever to come to the Town of Delaware, we would have the data to show how badly they damage the atmosphere. It is yet one more warning to the gas industry never to set foot (or rig) in the Delaware River Basin."

Although generous funding for the testing was also provided by a Heinz Foundation grant, town-wide testing is expensive and contributions are still being accepted by DCS.




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Ohio Department of Natural Resources' Division of Oil and Gas Resources Management State agency Web site.

ODNR Division of Oil and Gas Resources Management. State drilling permits. List is updated weekly.

ODNR Division of Geological Survey.

Ohio Environmental Protection Agency.

Ohio State University Extension.

Ohio Farm Bureau.

Ohio Oil and Gas Association, a Granville-based group that represents 1,500 Ohio energy-related companies.

Ohio Oil & Gas Energy Education Program.

Energy In Depth, a trade group.

Marcellus and Utica Shale Resource Center by Ohio law firm Bricker & Eckler.

Utica Shale, a compilation of Utica shale activities.

Landman Report Card, a site that looks at companies involved in gas and oil leases.FracFocus, a compilation of chemicals used in fracking individual wells as reported voluntarily by some drillers.

Chesapeake Energy Corp,the Oklahoma-based firm is the No. 1 driller in Ohio.

Rig Count Interactive Map by Baker Hughes, an energy services company.

Shale Sheet Fracking, a Youngstown Vindicator blog.

National Geographic's The Great Shale Rush.

The Ohio Environmental Council, a statewide eco-group based in Columbus.

Buckeye Forest Council.

Earthjustice, a national eco-group.

Stop Fracking Ohio.

People's Oil and Gas Collaborative-Ohio, a grass-roots group in Northeast Ohio.

Concerned Citizens of Medina County, a grass-roots group.

No Frack Ohio, a Columbus-based grass-roots group.

Fracking: Gas Drilling's Environmental Threat by ProPublica, an online journalism site.

Penn State Marcellus Center.

Pipeline, blog from Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on Marcellus shale drilling.

Allegheny Front, environmental public radio for Western Pennsylvania.