Marcellus Shale Exploration
Pennsylvania, home to the country's first oil and gas wells, is currently experiencing a second natural gas rush as more than 100 companies vie for rights to drill exploratory and production wells on public and private land.
Drilling wastewater must be treated appropriately before disposal. The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (PA DEP) requires disclosure of the chemicals used in well development, although the exact ratios are proprietary.
Did You Know?
Pennsylvania's first oil well struck oil about 70 feet below ground, but modern-day drilling operations often drill more than a mile into the Earth to locate pockets of natural gas in the Marcellus shale.
Some parties are concerned that the chemical used for hydraulic fracturing can contaminate underground drinking water supplies and pose potential health risks to humans and wildlife.
- PA DEP hosts the Marcellus Shale Web site.
- Penn State Public Broadcasting hosts the Pennsylvania’s gas Rush Web site.
- The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission encourages anglers, boaters, and other conservationists to support investing a portion of a potential natural gas severance tax in aquatic resource conservation.
- The Natural Resources Law Center hosts the Intermountain Oil and Gas BMP Project Web site.
- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency hosts the Underground Injection Control Program Web site.
- Additional technical information about the amount of available natural gas beneath Marcellus shale is discussed on Geology.com's Marcellus Shale - Appalachian Basin Natural Gas Play Web page.
- The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation hosts the Marcellus Shale Web site.
- Earthworks, a national environmental advocacy organization focused exclusively on the environmental and social issues surrounding mineral extraction, provides information on Hydraulic Fracturing of Oil and Gas Wells and Hydraulic Fracturing 101.
- The Susquehanna River Basin Commission (SRBC) hosts a Project Review page for Marcellus Shale and Natural Gas Well Development that includes videos of commission meetings on Marcellus Shale drilling, maps of gas well drilling activities, and relevant press releases.