Susquehanna River Basin Commission – Water Withdraws – Fact Sheet Registration.

The Susquehanna River Basin Commission (Commission) is contacting you because you may have clients who are affected by a new program for registration of unapproved water withdrawals and consumptive water uses in the Basin.  We are seeking your assistance to help ensure that facility managers are aware of and complete registration by the deadline of December 31, 2019.

An initial contact letter and registration factsheet (GFregistration-grandfathered-water-withdraws-factsheet) was sent to more than 1,300 facilities by direct mail this week. The targeted grandfathered facilities/sources are those where water withdrawals or consumptive uses equal or exceed the regulatory thresholds, but began operating before the applicable regulations became effective. These water withdrawals and uses are generally considered to be exempt from obtaining a Commission docket, provided there has been no environmental harm and no changes are made at the facility.

The Commission has initiated the registration effort after reviewing the results of our Cumulative Water Use and Availability Study that highlighted major gaps in the data the Commission needs in order to effectively manage the water resources of the Basin.  We estimated that there are possibly more than 700 older, unpermitted facilities with an estimated water use of nearly one billion gallons per day. If accurate, this volume of water use is roughly equal to the total amount currently accounted for, and managed, by the Commission across the entire Basin.

Informational webinars explaining the registration program will be conducted by Commission staff on November 14 and December 13, 2017. To register for a webinar, visit www.srbc.net/grandfathering-registration.

If you need additional information or assistance, visit the website or contact Commission staff at GFregistration@srbc.net.

Thank you,

Susquehanna River Basin Commission

Wayne County Pennsylvania “EDIBLE YARDS” and FREE Seed Swap

FREE forum “EDIBLE YARDS” and FREE Seed Swap

 SEEDS (Sustainable Energy Education & Development Support) kicks off its 2016 education series with a free forum on Edible Yards to be held Tuesday, March 29 from 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm at the Park Street Complex, 648 Park Street in Honesdale.

Learn how to grow healthy food while becoming more self-reliant and creating a bio-diverse environment for a healthy planet.

Several expert panelists will share their tips and tricks on topics including

raising chickens, foraging, growing fruit trees, beekeeping, and much more. In addition, members from the Audubon Society and Master Gardeners will be part of this informative event with plenty of time for Q & A.

No space? No problem! Learn about Honesdale’s Community Garden that provides plots for residents.
SEEDS will also be hosting a free Seed Swap. Bring seeds you’ve collected from your own garden or extra seeds you’ve purchased, and share with others.

Come and participate in this fun and informative evening.

Baked goods and light refreshments will be served. There will also be door prizes.

SEEDS (Sustainable Energy Education and Development Support) is a non-profit organization that promotes energy efficiency, renewable energy and sustainable living.  Visit www.seedsgroup.net to join our newsletter list to be notified of all our upcoming free forums.

Training Courses on Green Infrastructure, Sustainability, Alternative Energy, and More.
Hazards in Your Community ?  Get Your Report – Know Your H20?

PADEP pipeline task force gives 184 recommendations

Note Our Work – Email blast  from PIOGA

A state task force on natural gas pipelines is making 184 recommendations touching on everything from location of pipelines to emergency response plans, all designed to promote “responsible” pipeline development in Pennsylvania. The 335-page document, crafted by the state Department of Environmental Protection’s Pipeline Infrastructure Task Force, has been posted online for public review.

“It is important to remember that the report is not meant to be the final word,” said DEP Secretary John Quigley, who chaired the task force. “When we present our report to the governor in February 2016, I anticipate that the next step will be to determine the feasibility and implementation strategies for each recommendation.”

The 48-member task force was created in May by Governor Tom Wolf to develop policies, guidelines and tools to assist in pipeline development, operation and maintenance.

Recommendations in the draft were assembled by delegates from sectors affected by pipeline development, Quigley noted, including agriculture, communities, environmentalists, cultural resource advocates, industry officials, government agencies and emergency responders.

That lengthy list of recommendations starts with “educate landowners on pipeline development issues.” Other recommendations:

  • Implement full-time environmental inspections during pipeline construction.
  • Monitor water quality during construction.
  • Establish planning coordination between county agencies and pipeline developers.
  • Require pipeline abandonment plans.
  • Standardize emergency response plans and provide 911 addresses for pipeline-related facilities.
  • Do not locate pipelines parallel to waterways within their 100-year floodways.
  • Conduct early outreach with affected communities.
  • Minimize impact on local roads.
  • Create various statewide bodies and processes, including an all-region DEP pipeline review committee, a statewide pipeline information center for the public, and a DEP design manual for pipeline construction.

A 30-day public comment period on the draft report will run through December 14. [Read more]

Please note – there is no assumed responsibility associated with Pipeline Construction for Private Well Impacts – therefore it is important to document baseline conditions for your existing water sources and water wells.  Primary items of concern are aesthetic water quality issues, future methane and other gas releases, spills, local disturbances, discolored water, and related contaminants. The Know Your H20? App for Baseline Testing in PA should help.

New Tools and Courses

Know Your H20 Phone App and Database Search
Citizen Scientists – The Online Water Quality Index Calculator is Available.
Training Courses on Natural Gas Development and Environmental Concerns
Stream Restoration, Wetlands, and Water Resources Management 

Actions:

  1. If you have any testing done as part of this action, please consider releasing this data to the Citizen Groundwater and Surface Water Database.  Fill out the attached form and mail the data to the following address:
    Mr. Brian Oram, PG
    Keystone Clean Water Team
    15 Hillcrest Drive
    Dallas, PA 18612
    Please note- if you have baseline testing done already you may have some information on the level of surfactants in the water if you had a MBAS test done.
  2. Informational Screening Testing – Get your water screened for water contamination including isopropanol – Informational Screening Water Kit (Not Certified) Covers about 200 parameters, plus a review of any predrilling data – Only $ 275.00.  Email
  3. Drinking Water Guide for Pennsylvania.

 

Glyphosate Herbicide in Drinking Water Roundup

“Glyphosate is an herbicide that is regulated under the Safe Drinking Water Act. It is an ingredient in Roundup, a widely used herbicide, as well as more than 700 other products for sale in the United States.  Glyphosate is a non-selective herbicide used on many food and non-food crops as well as non-crop areas such as roadsides. When applied at lower rates, it serves as a plant growth regulator. The most common uses include control of broadleaf weeds and grasses hay/pasture, soybeans, field corn; ornamental, lawns, turf, forest plantings, greenhouses, and rights-of-way.

Some people who drink water containing glyphosate well in excess of the maximum contaminant level (MCL) for many years could experience problems with their kidneys or reproductive difficulties.  This health effects language is not intended to catalog all possible health effects for glyphosate. Rather, it is intended to inform consumers of some of the possible health effects associated with glyphosate in drinking water when the rule was finalized. In 1974, Congress passed the Safe Drinking Water Act. This law requires EPA to determine the level of contaminants in drinking water at which no adverse health effects are likely to occur. These non-enforceable health goals, based solely on possible health risks and exposure over a lifetime with an adequate margin of safety, are called maximum contaminant level goals (MCLG). Contaminants are any physical, chemical, biological or radiological substances or matter in water.

The MCLG for glyphosate is 0.7 mg/L or 700 ppb. EPA has set this level of protection based on the best available science to prevent potential health problems. EPA has set an enforceable regulation for glyphosate, called a maximum contaminant level (MCL), at 0.7 mg/L or 700 ppb. MCLs are set as close to the health goals as possible, considering cost, benefits and the ability of public water systems to detect and remove contaminants using suitable treatment technologies. In this case, the MCL equals the MCLG, because analytical methods or treatment technology do not pose any limitation.

The Phase V Rule, the regulation for glyphosate, became effective in 1994. The Safe Drinking Water Act requires EPA to periodically review the national primary drinking water regulation for each contaminant and revise the regulation, if appropriate. EPA reviewed glyphosate as part of the Six Year Review and determined that the 0.7 mg/L or 700 ppb MCLG and 0.7 mg/L or 700 ppb MCL for glyphosate are still protective of human health.” (EPA 2015)

While the United States classified glyphosate as non-carcinogenic when it was last reviewed in 1993, the World Health Organization published a study in March 2015 that indicates glyphosate is a probable carcinogen. Since the new study was released, there have been many questions asked regarding the safety of glyphosate. According to The Ecologist (June 12, 2015), several countries have banned or restricted use of the weed killer, including France, Columbia, Sri Lanka and El Salvador. In addition, many garden centers across the globe are pulling products that contain glyphosate off their shelves as a precautionary measure to protect customers. However, Roundup remains a staple herbicide in the United States.

Testing for glyphosate previously may have been cost prohibitive for many homeowners.  We have partnered with a national testing laboratory to provide a cost-effective alternative that also includes trace metals, volatile organics, and other organic chemicals.   For more information, please visit our Testing Testing and Evalatuion Protal but National Testing Laboratories (NTL) now offers a lower-cost test for detecting glyphosate in drinking water. Typical analysis by EPA-approved methods can cost $200 to $400, but the new package offers a much lower price to both water treatment professionals and homeowners.

Farming In Fear- Martha Boneta story a Virginia farmer

Earlier this week, I attended an event in Michigan that included a screening of a brand-new documentary called Farming In Fear. The film, just 28 minutes long, tells the story of Martha Boneta, who bought a small farm in Virginia and tried to make a go of it by selling produce and so on. She was viciously harassed by a variety of government agencies and environmental groups who evidently intended to drive her out of business.

It appears to be a classic example of the abuse of regulatory power to promote private interests and ideological agendas. Ms. Boneta’s farm home was subjected to repeated and apparently purposeless inspections of closets, bathrooms and so on. At one point, she was cited for holding an “event” without obtaining thousands of dollars worth of licenses and permits. The “event” was a birthday party for a friend’s daughter.

The story ends happily, as Boneta’s case became notorious and Virginia’s legislature eventually passed legislation that brought the harassment to a stop. Both Ms. Boneta and the filmmaker attended the screening and answered questions; she was very impressive. The film is produced by the Charles Koch Institute.”

The link to the embedded video 

Comments and Thoughts

  1. there needs to be balance in all things.  This includes a balance between economy and environment, private property and public good, and community interest over individual interest.
  2. it should always be about balance, current laws and freedoms, and facts – Not Fear.
  3. do we need a National Organization that protects landowners ??
  4. are we over regulating?  “Should we not want more small family farmers and farms?”

Online Training Courses
Stream Restoration – Course 1 of 6.
Wetland Science Course
Sustainability
Stormwater Harvesting
Regenerative Landscape Design
Natural Approach to Stormwater Management

For the New or Future Water Well Owner Homebuyer in Pennsylvania

Welcome to Pennsylvania and Welcome to Managing Your Own Small Water Company

In Pennsylvania,  there are generally no specific construction standards for private wells and there is only some general guidance with respect to well placement and construction.  Further, private well water is not regulated by the EPA or PADEP and therefore it is up to YOU to check your water to ensure that the well produces good clean and adequate water.    This is only a short summary of the information.  If you are interested we offer a Private Well Owner Training Course that can be offered as a Workshop for Your Community, Association, or other Organization.

There are a number of steps to this process and well will break them down as follows:

Well Placement
Well Construction
Well Testing (Yield and Quality)
Well Maintenance
Annual Water Testing

Well Placement
In general, the primary guidance with to water well placement in Pennsylvania is that a water well should be 100 feet from a septic system (regulated), 50 feet from a septic tank (regulated), 10 feet from a sewer line under pressure (regulated), and 10 feet from a property line. To be honest, these isolation distance do not consider impacts from other natural conditions or activities.  In general, we  would recommend the following:

1. If possible, the private well owner should control all activities within a 50 to  100 foot radius of the wellhead, i.e.., top of the water well. These activities should include: use of pesticides and herbicides, storage of toxic or hazardous chemicals, storage or management of manure and other waste, diversion of surface water and runoff, overuse of the area by grazing animals, location of burrow pits, burn pipes, rubbish storage, or storage of used cars or other items that may contain antifreeze, oils, and greases.
2. Well casing should extend at least 12 inches above grade.
3. Well should be fitted with a sanitary well cap that has some form of venting.
4. The well should be located at least 10 feet from a property line.

Other suggested isolation distances

Delineated wetlands or floodplains (25 feet)- with top of casing 3 feet above flood elevation.
Surface waters (25 feet) Storm water Systems (25 feet)
BioInfiltration Stormwater Systems (50 feet +)
Spray Irrigation/ Septage Disposal (100 feet+)
Sinkholes and Closed Depressions (100 feet +)
Farm silos / manure storage (200 feet) Septic Systems (100 feet)
Septic Tanks/Holding Tanks (50 feet)
Chemical Storage/Preparation Area (300 feet)

Well Construction

1. Prefer the use of steel casing that extends at least 15 feet to 20 feet into firm bedrock or 60 feet below ground, whichever is greater.
2. Casing should be of  adequate wall thickness to deal with corrosion and stress – 19lb casing.
3. The base of the casing should contain a driveshoe on the bottom of the casing and casing centralized in the borehole.
4. Wells drilled by a licensed well driller using only potable water as the drilling fluid.
5. Casing should be double circumferential welded or threaded casing
6. Well caps should be sanitary well caps that are properly vented.
7. Annular space should have a grout layer that is at least 1.5 inches thick.
8. Pitless adapters should be used over well pits.

Well Testing (Yield and Quality)

After the well is drilled, the well should be developed using surging, air-lift, or pumping the well.  This is done to clean out the well cuttings and improve yield.  In some cases, this needs to be done to improve the efficiency of the borehole. If the well yield is low, some well drillers will hydrofrac the well. If you are going to hydrofrac a water well, we recommend zone hydraulic fracturing to isolate the deeper potential water-bearing zones.   After the well development has been completed, a shock wellbore disinfection should be conducted.  The well should be allowed to fully recover and a minimum 2-hour yield test is recommend.  After the yield testing, the well should be shock disinfected.  For information on shock disinfection – we recommend visiting Water-Research Center.   The well yield data should include the static water level (water level before pumping), maximum dynamic water level (maximum depth to water during pumping), pumping rate, and length of the pumping test.  This data should be included on the well log and the specific capacity of the well should be reported.  The specific capacity is the rate of yield or gallons per minute per foot of drawdown.  The drawdown is the difference between the static and dynamic water level measurement. 

Before the end of the yield testing, it is recommended that a general water quality analysis of the well be conducted.  This testing should include bacterial quality, general water quality, and specific parameters that are known problems for your region.  Do not rely on a free water analysis or a basic water quality screening down by the well driller.  This should be either information or certified testing conducted by a laboratory.  For information on this type of testing, please contact the Keystone Clean Water Team or the Water-Research Center.   The initial water quality testing data should be reviewed and evaluated.  The first well or city water quality test should be a comprehensive water quality check.  If you are want informational water testing, we would recommend either the Well Water Check or the City Water Check Option. This evaluation should include the need for any further action to improve the well security, continue with well development, or add equipment to improve well water quality.  In some cases, water treatment systems are installed as an additional barrier or layer of protection.  In many cases, the only type of additional treatment that is needed is a whole-house particle filter and a sanitary well cap.  For information on Do-it-Yourself Water Treatment Systems.

Well and System Maintenance

At a minimum, the well water system should go through an annual inspection.  This inspection could be associated with the annual water quality test or inspection of any water treatment systems.  During this evaluation, the aesthetic quality of the water should be evaluated and some basic field water quality screening should be conducted.   For the field water screening, it is possible this can be done using a number of low-cost meters or an informational water quality screening test.

Annual Water Testing

Depending on the results of the initial evaluation, the results should be evaluated to determine what are the water quality parameters that should be monitored to help track the general water quality of the well.  If a water treatment system was installed, the annual water quality evaluation should include the performance of the water treatment system.  If you need help with determining what you need, WE can Help – Here is a partial listing of the informational water screening tests !  The Keystone Clean Water Team can provide guidance on the selection of water quality parameters, review water quality data, and make recommendations on the water quality parameters.  At a minimum, the Keystone Clean Water Team offers a Health Screen Test (only $ 50 if you have the sample bottles (video)) and testing includes bacteria, pH, conductivity, iron, manganese (if suspected), nitrate, total dissolved solids, total hardness, and alkalinity (Health Screen Test Order Form).    If you are interested, you may want to obtain a copy of our Educational Booklet and Brochure.

To Review a Number of our Case Studies – Common Private Well Problems and Fixes.

Everything we do began with an idea.

We have offered “Free” Assistance to this effort, but if you are a private well owner that needs assistance we are happy to help.

We realize your time is precious and the world is hectic. CCGG’s volunteers do only what they’re comfortable with. It can be a little or a lot.  Get YOUR WATER Tested – Discounted Screening Tests !

For more information, please go to CCGG’s About Page or contact us.  Follow us on Twitter 

Keystone Clean Water Team is a 501(c)(3) IRS approved nonprofit, volunteer organization and your donation is tax deductible to the extent allowed by law.    Unsolicited donations are appreciated (Helps us complete our mission), but we also do local educational workshops and local cellphone/small electronic recycling programs. If you would like to set up a program to help recycle cellphones at an event, business, or other organization.  Through our program we can recycle  cell phones, iPods, game systems, and small digital cameras.  If your interested, please contact us.

Help the Organization and Get Your Water Tested or Order the Private Well Owner Guide (proceeds benefit This Organization).  Keystone Clean Water Team!

Question of the Week – November 24, 2014 – Phosphates Well Water Hazardous??

From Elaine

I am concerned about phosphates in my well water ( drinking). I would like to know are there safe levels of phosphates and what are they? Also what harm can they do if we drink them?

Phosphates

Dear Elaine,

First – Thanks for the Question and thanks for your comments about our Web Outreach – Phosphate in drinking water there is no formal drinking water standard set by the EPA, but the World Health Organization as a standard of 5 ppm. In central water distribution systems, like public water systems, the operators may add phosphate to help with corrosion control.   Elevated Phosphates in the water for  a private well could raise the following concerns:

1. May raise concerns about other contaminants associated with septic systems, agricultural runoff, pulp and paper mills,  or golf course management.
2. May cause problems with enhance algal growth in swimming pools or fish tanks.
3. May suggest a direct connection to a stream or surfacewater body.

Phosphorus is necessary for life and we have a Recommend Daily Allowance of 800 mg.   Phosphorous is a non-metallic element and is found local bedrock

This should not be significant concern, but we always recommend getting a comprehensive water quality test.

Elevated phosphates in lakes and surfacewater are a significant issue, because in most cases phosphates is the growth limiting nutrient.

Make a difference starting now!

Recycling cell phones helps the environment by saving energy and keeping useable and valuable materials out of landfills and incinerators. It also helps preserve important animal habitats by reducing the demand for Coltan. In addition to recycling cell phones and electronic waste it is critical that consumers demand conflict free electronic devices.   You can help the Keystone Clean Water Team and the Environment by recycling your cell phone.  ”

If you would like to set up a program to help recycle cellphones at an event, business, or other organization.  Through our program we can recycle  cell phones, iPods, game systems, and small digital cameras.  If your interested, please contact us.

Volunteer

We seek new people at all skill levels for a variety of programs. One thing that everyone can do is attend meetings to share ideas on improving the Program, enabling us to better understand and address the concerns of well owners.  We look for people that can forward solid articles, help coordinate local education efforts, and more.  Become part of the Keystone Clean Water Team!

Everything we do began with an idea.

We realize your time is precious and the world is hectic. CCGG’s volunteers do only what they’re comfortable with. It can be a little or a lot.  Get YOUR WATER Tested – Discounted Screening Tests !

For more information, please go to CCGG’s About Page or contact us.

Keystone Clean Water Team is a 501(c)(3) IRS approved nonprofit, volunteer organization and your donation is tax deductible to the extent allowed by law.    Unsolicited donations are appreciated (Helps us complete our mission).

Help the Organization and Get Your Water Tested or Order the Private Well Owner Guide (proceeds benefit This Organization).  Keystone Clean Water Team!

House Bill 1565 House Committee on Environmental Resources and Energy Hearing January 29, 2014 Thomas Reilly

House Committee on Environmental Resources and Energy Hearing January 29, 2014 –
Testimony by Mr. Thomas J. Reilly, Jr., P.E., President of Reilly Associates Engineering.

My name is Tom Reilly. I want to thank you for this opportunity to present my views on the
proposed legislation. I am a professional engineer licensed in Pennsylvania and New York and
President of Reilly Associates Engineering located in Pittston and Stroudsburg. Our practice is
focused on Civil and Environmental Engineering for public and private infrastructure projects
and land development. Our firm was founded by my grandfather over 80 years ago. During the
30 years since I began my engineering career I have been an active practitioner in the application
of new regulations instituted to improve and protect water quality. I have always been
fascinated with civil engineering as a career for two reasons. First, each project is a unique
challenge because each every site has a different characteristics and warrants a customized
solution. Second because there is the opportunity to benefit many people with a good solution
whether they are the users of the project themselves or those downstream. I also love
Pennsylvania because of the beauty and diversity of the landscapes from rural to urban and the
variety of waters from small brooks and ponds to large rivers and lakes.

I support the proposed House Bill No. 1565 because we can both protect streams and develop
projects by applying appropriate best management practices on a site specific basis. I believe in
a holistic approach where the topography, soils, flora and fauna, water resources, property rights
and transportation and utility infrastructure are evaluated in the context of the project program
and a plan developed using green infrastructure techniques. There are a wide range of
management practices that may be applied to achieve the anti-degradation requirement of the
clean water act that depend on the project setting and development goals. Riparian buffers
should be part of a mix of planning and design elements with its width adjusted based on the
specific site situation including the nature of the water resource. Measures such as bioretention,
water gardens, pervious pave, green roofs and cisterns coupled with minimization of parking
areas can work with various widths of riparian area to achieve the required level of treatment and
protection.

Waters which currently require riparian buffers include ditches a few feet wide which are
designated ‘intermittent streams” and small ponds where the 150 ft. buffers on each side of the
water combine to total 300 ft. and often result in substantial portions of large tracts being
rendered unbuildable. In most of these cases the anti-degradation requirements could have been
met with a number of different BMPs tailored to the site situation. There are also numerous
special protection waters in urban and suburban settings where the existing pattern of
development is entirely within the 150 ft. area and the existing smaller riparian border is well
established by historic neighboring development. While the regulations allow for a waiver
procedure with review by DEP, this requirement and process is akin to a local zoning board
establishing new building setbacks that are three times the existing setback on small existing lots
with the result that any new building could not go forward without seeking a variance.

The benefits of riparian buffers include the establishment and preservation of greenways along
stream corridors for enhancement of wildlife habitat and community recreation as well as water
quality protection and improved neighborhood property values. Each of these community

benefits are most ably pursued in balance with property owner interests through local and
regional planning, zoning and stormwater regulations. Water quality can be protected to meet
Clean Water Act requirements with a site specific management plan. Many local codes already
include stream setbacks in the range of 25 ft. to 75 ft. and floodplain management ordinances
where variances can be addressed where appropriate at a local level.

My work includes project development in New York State in areas of similar topography across
the border from Northeast Pennsylvania. The New York State application of NPDES
stormwater requirements of the clean water act includes buffers as optional best management
practices where buffers can be coupled with other site design approaches and structural BMPs to
achieve the water quality, volume and rate goals.

Keeping the parts of Pennsylvania with extensive HQ and EV waters economically competitive
and keeping the waters clean will require using a more holistic approach that incorporates a more
flexible approach to NPDES permitting.

I support the proposed HB 1565.

Water Wells in Proximity to Natural Gas Development

Not our work

“Home prices fell in some parts of the Marcellus Shale region of the country after drilling began, and rose in other parts, and the difference was whether the families’ drinking water came from wells or municipal water mains, a study by Resources for the Future (RFF) reported in late June.  (Note RFF-“RFF research on energy focuses on key sectors, including electric power, transportation, and unconventional fuels, and evaluates options to promote new, efficient technologies and the sustainable development of energy resources.”)

For homes within about 1 mile of a shale gas well, sale prices rose 10% from 2004 to 2009 if families were served by piped-in water, most likely due to expectations of increased value from gas drilling leases, RFF concluded.

Prices of homes dependent upon well water fell 16% in that period, which the RFF researchers said may be linked to fears of potential groundwater contamination from shale drilling operations.  (Note- Could be linked to economy, the owner did not own the mineral rights, the house was over leveraged, etc etc)

The survey covered homes in Washington County, Pennsylvania, south of Pittsburgh, where the number of gas wells jumped from five in 2005 to more than 490 wells by 2009.

The swing in home values was a significant 26%. “Even if shale gas operations do not contaminate groundwater in the short run, the stigma from the possibility of future groundwater contamination may negatively affect property values, resulting in important long-term consequences for homeowners,” the researchers said.

RFF released this study and others June 27 from its 18-month examination of risks and regulations surrounding shale gas development.
Note – I did not find the study on their website or a pres release about the study

A theme in several investigations is the lack of credible data on the impacts of drilling operations, members of the RFF research teams said.

“We have no data whatsoever on actual degradation of groundwater. We don’t know,” said RFF’s Lucija Muehlenbachs, commenting on the housing prices study. “This is just perceptions” by county residents, but perceptions matter in this case, she said.

NGWA has published an information brief on wells that are in proximity to natural gas/oil installations.Click here to read the information brief.”   For specific guidance on Pennsylvania – get this booklet – proceeds benefit groundwater education in Pennsylvania.

Othere Resources from RFF
Survey of Regulations in 31 states -The maps are available through a user-friendly, online interface: www.rff.org/shalemaps.

To learn more about RFF’s work on managing the risks of shale gas development, visit www.rff.org/shalegasrisks Risk Matrix
 
Shale gas by state

My personal comments (From the Desk of Mr. Brian Oram)

1. Please note the words – stigma, possibility, and  no data whatsoever on actual degradation of groundwater.
2. I think this article is more a statement about fear, unknown, and a climate or environment that promotes spin over facts.
3. The lease terms and conditions and the ownership of the subsurface rights impacts value.  Therefore a bad lease or incomplete lease will impact value.
4. Baseline testing is needed and the real estate industry is just really getting to understand risk as it relates to the housing market, but there are a lot of risk issues – gasoline stations, airports, dams, floodways, mining, industrial development, agricultural manure management, roadways, landfills, pipelines , etc.
5. Until recently the real estate industry only requested water testing for bacteria and maybe nitrates even though the other problems were known.
6. The article I think is more about no really knowing the risk and a past history of understanding the risk.  Also – this County has a long history of abandon oil and gas wells.
7. Oil and Gas Database PA How to Access
8. Expect More from the NGWA when they recommend articles.
9. Movies that promote SPIN on either side over FACTS – create unknown – creates fear and lack of trust.
10. Lets not forget the economy
11. We have always recommended getting a complete baseline test on the water quality of your well water, inspection of your home, and my business does conduct online database searchs of known harzardous as part of real estate transactions.
12. Make decisions based on facts not fear.  I know we are humans so this is difficult.
13. I finally found the publication  (pdf – March 2013)

Volunteer
We seek new people at all skill levels for a variety of programs. One thing that everyone can do is attend meetings to share ideas on improving CCGG, enabling us to better understand and address the concerns of well owners.

Everything we do began with an idea.

We realize your time is precious and the world is hectic. CCGG’s volunteers do only what they’re comfortable with. It can be a little or a lot.

For more information, please go to CCGG’s About Page or contact us.

Carbon County Groundwater Guardians is a 501(c)(3) IRS approved nonprofit, volunteer organization and your donation is tax deductible to the extent allowed by law.  Help the Organization and Get Your Water Tested or Order the Private Well Owner Guide (proceeds benefit This Organiazation).

Save the Date – April 15th – Sewage Facilities Planning Module Webinar

DEP invites you to participate in an important upcoming webinar about Draft Technical Guidance for DEP’s review of Sewage Facilities Planning Modules for onlot sewage systems proposed in Pennsylvania’s High Quality and Exceptional Value Watersheds. 

 The proper location and management of community and individual onlot septic systems is key to safeguarding public health and Pennsylvania’s water quality resources.  The new draft technical guidance will ensure cost-effective and reasonable best management practices (BMPs) for nonpoint source control are achieved to maintain and protect water quality when reviewing sewage facilities planning modules for proposed individual or community onlot sewage systems in high quality and exceptional value watersheds. 

 During the one-hour webinar, DEP staff will describe BMPs for individual and community onlot sewage systems that can achieve nonpoint source control in High Quality and Exceptional Value waters, and review the process for selecting appropriate BMPs to achieve such control.

 The webinar will be held from 2-3 p.m., Monday April 15.  The webinar is free but registration is required.  To register, visit https://copa.webex.com/copa/onstage/g.php?t=a&d=645447507

 The Draft Technical Guidance can be found here:  http://www.elibrary.dep.state.pa.us/dsweb/Get/Document-93420/385-2208-001.pdf   Public comments regarding the Draft Technical Guidance are due to DEP May 1. 

Some Personal Thoughts on this Proposed Policy