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Ohio Utica Shale

Pennsylvania rivers are strong, and drilling industry takes credit

By Bob Downing Published: February 20, 2013

A press release from the Marcellus Shale Coalition, a pro-drilling group based in Pennsylvania:

State of Key Pa. Rivers Growing Stronger Alongside Safe Natural Gas Production

Pittsburgh, Pa.– While there continues to be a great deal of public focus on the safe, effective and tightly-regulated development of clean-burning American natural gas, especially as it relates to protecting our water resources, the health of several key Pennsylvania rivers are strong -- further demonstrating that natural gas development can, and must, be balanced with enhancing our environment.

For its part, the natural gas industry recognizes that technological advancements must continue to be leveraged across its operations toward the shared goal of a stronger environment and a stronger economy. And through the ongoing development of Recommended Practices and other water management technologies, which are allowing for more water to be recycled and reused, along with common sense environmental regulations, this objective continues to be met. And as President Obama said a week ago in his State of the Union Address, responsible shale gas development “has led to cleaner power and greater energy independence. We need to encourage that.”

  • Monongahela River Named Pa. River of the Year. Earlier this month, the Monongahela River was “named Pennsylvania’s 2013 River of the Year following public, online voting across the state,” according to the state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) in partnership with the Pennsylvania Organization for Watershed and Rivers. Commenting on the award, which have been presented annually to various waterways across the Commonwealth since 1983, DCNR secretary Richard Allan said “the Monongahela is surging back as a vital link to unlimited recreational potential and rich natural and historical resources.”


  • SRBC Notes “Good Progress” in Annual State of the Susquehanna Report. Last week, the Susquehanna River Basin Commission (SRBC) released its annual State of the Susquehanna assessment “showing trends in water use, drinking water, stormwater, aquatic habitat and other key water resource indicators,” according to its press release. With nearly 6 million people dependent on the basin for their drinking water supplies, SRBC – along with other regulatory bodies – continues to tightly-regulated natural gas related activities and withdrawals in the region. And while some question the volumes of water required in the natural gas production process, SRBC’s report makes clear that such activities – which have increased slightly – represent a fraction of total water use from the Susquehanna River. The following charts – from page 5 of SRBC’s report – highlight this fact.



This positive news cannot, and will not, make for complacency however. The responsible development of Pennsylvania’s Marcellus Shale – which is helping to put more than 240,000 Pennsylvanians to work today, according to the state Department of Labor & Industry – represents a generational opportunity, and we must work collaboratively and diligently to get this right. President Obama is right -- we need to encourage this safe development.



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Utica and Marcellus shale web sites

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.