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Discussion Starter #1
The following violation data comes from the report available to all at Pennsylvania's
Department of Environmental Protection site:
http://www.dep.state.pa.us/dep/DEPUTATE/MINRES/OILGAS/OGInspectionsViolations/OGInspviol.htm

This is just the data for Bradford County, Pa for the 2011 year to date. The following data was compiled
from that report on December 17th, 2011.

Towanda 015-20221 defective casing - 3/3/2011 Chesapeake
Terry 015-20702 defective casing - 3/4/2011 Chesapeake
Wyalusing 015-20715 defective casing - 6/21/2011 Chesapeake
Wyalusing 015-20720 defective casing - 5/18/2011 Chesapeake
Standing Stone 015-20732 defective casing - 3/22/2011 Chesapeake
Troy 015-20759 improper casing - 3/22/2011 Chesapeake
Troy 015-20760 improper casing - 3/22/2011 Chesapeake
Wyalusing 015-20857 defective casing - 6/21/2011 Chesapeake
Orwell 015-20865 defective casing - 5/18/2011 Chesapeake
Orwell 015-20871 defective casing - 3/3/2011 Chesapeake
Wyalusing 015-20922 defective casing - 6/21/2011 Chesapeake
Wyalusing 015-20923 defective casing - 6/21/2011 Chesapeake
Wysox 015-21180 defective casing - 4/20/2011 Chesapeake
Orwell 015-21388 defective casing - 8/23/2011 Chesapeake
Sheshequin 015-21403 defective casing - 8/21/2011 Chesapeake
Overton 015-21512 defective casing - 7/29/2011 Chesapeake
Asylum 015-21341 defective casing - 4/14/2011 Chief
Asylum 015-21352 defective casing - 4/14/2011 Chief
Stevens 015-20837 defective casing - 5/11/2011 Southwestern

All violations listed as defective casing were leaking gas and none of them were reported to the DEP.

Additional violations include but are in no way limited to:

failure to properly store, transport, process, or dispose of residual waste - 13 violations.
discharge of pollutional material to waters of the Commonwealth - 26 violations.

Keep in mind the DEP is short staffed. A DEP policy adopted and published in 1989 requires a MINIMUM of 12
inspections at each well. http://www.pacode.com/secure/data/025/chapter78/s78.903.html

Currently the DEP is only inspecting a fraction of current gas wells. Estimated between 1/4 and 1/3 of all
gas well are inspected, This means that currently between 66 and 75 percent of all gas well are not inspected.
Does this mean the number of violations would increase? I think any reasonable person would have to
agree it absolutely would. How much? That's anyone's guess. Mathematically speaking, I believe it would be
reasonable to expect 2 - 3 times the number of violations currently reported by the DEP.

I am not making a statement of any sort here just reporting the data that is freely available to all and asking the question:
Do you feel this is safe or not and why?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
timberdoodle said:
About 33,000 deaths in the US from traffic accidents last year... You don't happen to drive do ya?
About half of those due to driving under the influence. We do throw those bums in jail. And I wasn't providing statistics for the entire country. To make a fair comparison let's go with this report:

http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/departments...County_2009.PDF
This report shows between 2005 and 2009 there was an average of 8.6 traffic fatalities per year in Bradford County. That is disproportionately low compared to the number of violations issued in Bradford County to the gas industry. So I'll ask, what's your point?
 

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g17 said:
All violations listed as defective casing were leaking gas and none of them were reported to the DEP
ok, who wrote all those violations if they weren't reported to DEP? How did DEP find out about them if they weren't reported to DEP?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
timberdoodle said:
g17 said:
All violations listed as defective casing were leaking gas and none of them were reported to the DEP
ok, who wrote all those violations if they weren't reported to DEP? How did DEP find out about them if they weren't reported to DEP?
Fair enough question. As far as I know, the DEP wrote the violations. The DEP inspectors uncovered violations during their inspections. In a nutshell if the well you are working on is now bubbling gas around the well casing, the driller is supposed to notify the DEP within 24 hours. In these instances the drilling companies did not notify the DEP. Instead, DEP's inspectors uncovered it during routine inspections. Any other questions?
Would you like to provide an answer to the question I asked?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
timberdoodle said:
You m ean is it safe? Relatively speaking yes I think it is safe. Are there risks? Yes. Most definitely.

http://thetimes-tribune.com/news/dep-hiring-more-gas-drilling-inspectors-1.579626#axzz1goodA14p
The question was do you think it's safe and why? just looking for other's insight. Personally, I do not believe it to be safe. My reason for this is partly the data provided in addition to other references I have seen. Do I think the drillers can do a better job and make it safer by leaps and bounds? Absolutely! I just think at present time we are not there yet. Again, just a matter of opinion, no wrong, no right answer - just looking for other opinions aside from what is published in the papers.

The story you linked to is definitely a step in the right direction. The problem is the DEP is still woefully understaffed as far as inspectors go. Hence the 66 - 75 percent range of wells that are not inspected even once Considering it is the DEP's policy to inspect each and every well a minimum of 12 times, I dont' know what it could be besides a manpower issue.
 

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your comparing trafic fatalities to gas well violations, not quite apples for apples. why don't you compare all trafic violations to all gas well violations and trafic fatalities to gas well fatalities, I haven't heard of a well bubbling gas around the casing killin anyone yet!!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
jj103.5 said:
your comparing trafic fatalities to gas well violations, not quite apples for apples. why don't you compare all trafic violations to all gas well violations and trafic fatalities to gas well fatalities, I haven't heard of a well bubbling gas around the casing killin anyone yet!!
If you were following the post, you would have seen I was merely replying to someone who brought up car fatalities. Never said gas bubbling around wells causes fatalities. All it says about that according to the EPA report is that it is a defective well casings. Well casings that leak can contaminate a nearby water supply. This little tidbit of info is not disputed by the gas industry. Drinking said water is probably not great for your health.

Being you felt the need to hop in, why don't you answer the original question.. do you feel it's safe and why?
 

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Just curious G.

Whats your goal here.

Very obviously, you oppose drilling and using the gas.

So do you want to get everyone on your side to stop the gas play, or do you want something else?


Most here seem to want the gas and the economic boost that it gives the state, right along with the employment that comes with it.

In a nut shell, over the years, it has come down to a wise use and extraction acceptance. Conservation methodology is essential. Use the resource with protections for the environment while extracting it and getting it to market.

The question is, why the sudden appearance here that is seemingly dedicated to the horrors of gas drilling. Whats the goal? Any affiliations?
 

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Pardon me.....but considering the number of gas wells in Pa., those bad apples that you have listed don't seem to be a pimple on an elephants....um......ham.

SW
 

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Discussion Starter #12
No affiliations other than being a land owner who is against careless practices that endanger my water supply. I do not oppose using gas, nor do I oppose drilling for said gas responsibly. I don't think the drilling practices today are very responsible. For my reasoning why I don't think it's safe, I posted cold hard facts from the DEP website. Like I said matter of opinion.. really no right or wrong answers just curious. The fact that 3 people have replied without even answering the question seems bizarre to me. I guess I can assume they think it safe but have no idea why?

As to 'getting everyone on my side to stop the gas play'.. No, it's here to stay for sure. I would like to make it safer than it is in it's current configuration.

So now that I've answered your questions, how about answering mine. simple question.. do you think it is currently safe or not and why?
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Sethwood said:
Pardon me.....but considering the number of gas wells in Pa., those bad apples that you have listed don't seem to be a pimple on an elephants....um......ham.

SW
Those are just for Bradford County. Statewide violations (not including administration type errors) stands at about 5 percent meaning 1 in 20 wells has an issue.
I'd like to see it drop below 1 percent. No doubt if the industry steps it up that should certainly be an obtainable goal. To me that would be a reasonable risk and I would consider it safe. 5 percent seems excessive to me.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
47studebaker said:
I wonder were I can get a job with DEP?
here:
http://pa.gov/portal/server.pt/community/employment/13766

For an inspector starting annual salary is $42,250. Benefits include comprehensive health insurance; liberal retirement/pension plan; paid vacation, personal and sick leave; paid holidays; prescription, vision and dental coverage; paid group life insurance; and more.

you are welcome
 

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i noticed a lot of those violations were for E&S, proper signage, etc. are you saying 1 in 20 wells has a issue like a leaking casing ?
 

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Discussion Starter #17
buzz said:
i noticed a lot of those violations were for E&S, proper signage, etc. are you saying 1 in 20 wells has a issue like a leaking casing ?
I'm not saying anything. Just relaying info on the DEP reports. The report says 1 out of 20 wells has an issue with environmental, health, and safety violations. That can include such things as defective casings, leaks, spills, improper storage facilities on site, etc. Since it's inception, the violations report has usually been split about 50/50 with regards to administrative vs environmental, health and safety violations.

You can easily verify that yourself by going to the site the report is on and looking at the year to date wells inspected report. Then it's just a matter of simple math to get the percentage.

Be careful not to confuse the violations report with the workload report. The violation report just lists inspections where things were found amiss, not the total number of inspections. You'll need to look at the weekly workload reports for the actual number of wells inspected.

I corrected an anti on another forum who was trying to say 100 percent of the wells inspected had issues. He/She had inadvertently thought the number of wells inspected on the violations report was the total number of inspections performed in 2011.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Here is the link for the 2011 workload report.

http://www.dep.state.pa.us/dep/deputate/...Last%20Week.pdf

You will still need to go line by line on the violations report though to find eliminate multiple violations for the same well. Otherise using this data you will reach a percentage of nearly 15 percent by taking half the violations (offsetting for usual 50/50 split on admin vs EHS violtations) dividing by the number of wells inspected and mutiplying by 100 to get the percentage. Aslo be careful you are only factoring in the numbers for marcellus as that is what we are discussing.
 

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Well G, it's like this. Natural gas is a volital, explosive, dangerous, toxic ...and I'm going to call it a chemical as I'm not a scientist and don't really know what it is.

However, when you extract this type of explosive gas from the ground, it's going to entail a risk. And the risk are many. The risk of ground water contamination, stream contamination, explosion at the drilling site, along with risk I'm not even considering.

The offset of those risk are the cost of Americans heating their homes at reasonable prices and the cost of business's making products and employing people.

Just as someone above mentioned....there's a risk to driving a car. There's a risk to flying an airplane. Yet, we still do it.

I can't tell you if it's the "right" thing to do. I can tell you that going forward, I believe it's worth the risk. And I also believe dollars need to be set aside to fund for risk that are for sure going to happen. Like water wells going bad.

But, my opinion and $1.25 will get you a coffee at the corner store.

SW
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Sethwood, Thanks for the reply I was beginning to think this wasnt' a discussion forum. Personally I'd like to see the risks lowered a tad before going full steam ahead.

I think it's a great idea to set aside funding for risk management. What do you think of also setting aside some for renewable energy source research? I was reading that Germany is on course to be producing 100 percent of there electricity demand by 2050. Currently they are producing 16 percent. I know there is no magic bullet as far as renewables go but maybe with a combination of current methods and some new technology through research it's possible?

I'm not sure I buy the home heating cost benefit too much.
I read a fascinating theory recently that the cost of oil really hasn't risen, it's just that the dollar is extremely weak. For proof they offered up the argument that in 1965 when oil was cheap, you could buy about 12 barrels for an ounce of gold. Today you can get 16 barrels for that same ounce of gold. Not sure I buy that either but, it was interesting.
 
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