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Ohio Utica Shale

Portman pleased that EPA to review Wyoming report

By Bob Downing Published: March 2, 2012

U.S. Sen, Rob Portman, R-Ohio, announced today that he is pleased that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will review its controversial decision on hydraulic fracturing or fracking in Wyoming.

The federal agency decided to designate its draft report from Pavillion, Wyo., to be a "highly influential scientific assessment" that wil require a more thorough and transparent peer review.

Last month, Portman and U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., called for the EPA to make sure that the report released last December complies with legal standards of scientific integrity.

They called the EPA report "novel" and "precedent-setting."

The industry and others charged that the EPA report was inaccurate and flawed and could have potential impacts on state and federal regulations on drilling for natural gas.

The Wyoming report said that fracking might be to blame for causing groundwater pollution.

The EPA found that compounds likely associated with fracking  chemicals had been detected in the groundwater beneath Pavillion, a  small community in central Wyoming where residents say their well  water reeks of chemicals.

Health officials in 2010 advised them  not to drink their water after the EPA found low levels of  hydrocarbons in their wells.

The EPA has emphasized that the findings are specific to the  Pavillion area. The agency said the fracking that occurred in  Pavillion differed from fracking methods used elsewhere in regions with different geological characteristics.

The fracking occurred below the level of the drinking water aquifer  and close to water wells, the EPA said.

Elsewhere, drilling is more  remote and fracking occurs much deeper than the level of  groundwater that would normally be used.

Calgary, Alberta-based Encana Corp. that owns the Pavillion gas field disputes the EPA findings.

The compounds EPA said could be associated with fracking and could have had other origins not related to gas development, the company said.


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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.