Marcellus Shale Appalachian Basin Unique View

Natural gas production from the Marcellus shale formation in the increased to 14.4 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) in January 2015, accounting for more than 36% of shale gas production and more than 18% of total dry natural gas production in the United States, according to EIA’s Natural Gas Weekly Update. Recent updates to EIA’s maps and geologic information for the Marcellus shale play help to characterize the formation’s structure, thickness, and extent. EIA uses well data to construct maps showing the formation extent and structure of the productive and prospectively productive regions of the Marcellus. Structure and thickness maps are key elements in resource estimation and in defining the areas where hydrocarbon extraction is economical. Maps showing the top and bottom of the formation as 3-D surfaces can be used for a rough estimation of subsurface volumes, as well as detection of regional structural and tectonic features such as major faults, folds, and thrusts.   Post provided for educational purposes.


Depth to the  Formation

Depth to the Formation


3D Diagram of the Basin

3D Diagram of the Basin


Thickness of the Marcellus Shale

Thickness of the Marcellus Shale

Principal Contributors: Olga Popova, Evan Frye, Elizabeth Panarelli (Oil Voice) 4/1/15

“The Ben Franklin Shale Gas Innovation and Commercialization Center ( is designed to harness innovation and new technologies to maximize the economic return to Pennsylvania’s citizens from the Marcellus and Utica shale formations. The Center’s goal is to increase sustainable employment and wealth creation in Pennsylvania that has the potential to outlast the initial exploration, production and transportation of natural gas from the formations. The Center will also identify, support and commercialize technologies and early-stage businesses that enhance responsible stewardship of the environment while properly utilizing this transformative energy asset.”

Learn More About Natural Gas Development, Fracking, Fracking Terms, and Sustainability

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. KCWT’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 KCWT’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.  Our new PSAs.

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

Pipeline Panel Discussion Northeastern Pennsylvania

Wilkes University is hosting a panel discussion entitled “Gas Pipelines in Northeastern PA: Challenges and Solutions” on Thursday, 19 March between 7:30 P.M. – 9:30 P.M.  The session will be held in Stark Learning Center, Room 101.  The event is free.

The purpose of the session will be to offer the public a balanced perspective on natural gas pipeline development.  Regulatory, planning, and landowner issues to protect PAs citizens and its environment while allowing for infrastructure development will be explored.

Panelists will include Mike Mara (UGI Energy Services), Dave Horn (LIUNA), Davitt Woodwell (Pennsylvania Environmental Council), Paul Metro (Pennsylvania Utility Commission), Josh Longmore (Luzerne County Conservation District), State Senator John T. Yudichak, Kenneth Klemow (Wilkes University), and Brian Oram (BF Environmental Consultants Inc).

The anticipated format will involve panelists responding to a series of prepared questions, followed up by moderated questions from the audience.


 Directions to Campus

Campus Map (You want Stark Learning Center)


Online Training Courses Related to Natural Gas Development
Sustainability Training
Stream Restoration Courses

Gas pipelines in Northeastern PA: Challenges and Solutions

Gas pipelines in Northeastern PA: Challenges and Solutions


Hydraulic Fracturing Defined Fracking Words Matter Debate on Energy, Environmental, Humans

The word fracking – First, I personally and professionally dislike the word for a number of reasons. First it is jargon and second it is industry slang.  The word lends itself to redefinition and misuse.

Definitions – We are defining slang terms?

1) frack·ing, noun \ˈfra-kiŋ\ the injection of fluid into shale beds at high pressure in order to free up petroleum resources (such as oil or natural gas)  (Source:

My comments – not a bad definition – but the process is called hydraulic fracturing – they miss the issue of the use of chemicals to change the characteristics of water to reduce friction loss and prevent bacterial growth.  Also – there  is no Freeing up of a resource – the process creates an artificial pathway that causes the fuel to escape through the pipe or borehole rather than taking millions of years to migrate up through the rock strata.  Also – does not indicate that the process is regulate under the EPA UIC Program under special cases.

2) Fracking is the process by which the oil and gas industry undermines the public right to safe drinking water, clean air and healthy communities by using toxic chemicals and large volumes of water to extract unsustainable fossil fuels from the earth for profit.(Source: Food & Water Watch –

This is a great example of the lack of fact, but more about environmental spin doctors.  Now – this is not only an approach used by certain organizations.  Definition is more about a philsophical point than an actual definition that explains the process, but presents the potential things could happen.  The only part that is correct is “toxic chemicals are used”, “large volumes of water are used (but more is used to produce other sources of electricity), “extract fossil fuels”, “fossil fuels are not infinitely sustainable (but neither is any building or structure we build or even our cities), it does happen on earth, and it is done for a profit.  (Profit is not bad – non-profit organizations make a profit – they do not call it profit and this is a Capitalist society).   This definition tells you more about the Organization than the process.

3) Fracking – A slang term for hydraulic fracturing. Fracking refers to the procedure of creating fractures in rocks and rock formations by injecting fluid into cracks to force them further open. The larger fissures allow more oil and gas to flow out of the formation and into the wellbore, from where it can be extracted. (Source:
Misses the mark related to the nature of the chemicals that are used and the use of a propent to hold the fractures open so the gas and oil can migrate out of the formation into the borehole or pipeline, i.e., the artificial low pressure point, and not up through thousands of feet of rock.  I do like they indicate it is a slang term and the proper term is hydraulic fracturing.  It is a procedure – it is part of a process – NOT the whole process.

4) Fracking is the process of drilling down into the earth before a high-pressure water mixture is directed at the rock to release the gas inside. Water, sand and chemicals are injected into the rock at high pressure which allows the gas to flow out to the head of the well.The process is carried out vertically or, more commonly, by drilling horizontally to the rock layer. The process can create new pathways to release gas or can be used to extend existing channels. (Source;

It is a process Yes – no mention of the slang nature of the work and the correct term – hydraulic fracturing.  It is NOT a Drilling Process – this is JUST Wrong.  Yes – Water, sand and chemicals are injected.  Chemicals are toxic    The sentence starting – “the process …..”  Is Just Wrong !

5) Fracking, or hydraulic fracturing, is the process of extracting natural gas from shale rock layers deep within the earth. Fracking makes it possible to produce natural gas extraction in shale plays that were once unreachable with conventional technologies. Recent advancements in drilling technology have led to new man-made hydraulic fractures in shale plays that were once not available for exploration. In fact, three dimensional imaging helps scientists determine the precise locations for drilling. (Source:

No mention it is a slang term- statement is true, but does it create a definition?  I do like the mention of the word recent.  Because it is the recent improvements in the process that makes this feasible.

6) Hydraulic Fracturing – a method of mining in which cracks are created in a type of rock called shale in order to obtain gas, oil, or other substances that are inside it (Source:

Used the correct work – definition is clearly wrong.  The definition makes it sound like the old water mining techniques that were used in the 1800s to mine for gold by eroding mountains with high pressure water.

7)  fracking, fracking also spelled fracing or fraccing, also called hydrofracking, in full hydraulic fracturing,  in natural gas and petroleum production, the injection of a fluid at high pressure into an underground rock formation in order to open fissures and allow trapped gas or crude oil to flow through a pipe to a wellhead at the surface. Employed in combination with improved techniques for drilling horizontally through selected rock layers, hydraulic fracturing has opened up vast natural gas deposits in the United States. At the same time, the rapid rise of the practice, frequently in regions with no history of intensive oil and gas drilling, has raised concerns over its economic and environmental consequences.

Not a bad definition – lacks clarity on the nature of the fluid, but then goes on to add the “positive spin” of the Industry.  I do like the closing sentence – “The Rapid Rise” of the practice in areas with “no historic knowledge of the process” has created concerns that are economic and environmental.

If you are going to allow a definition to present a point – then – it would be appropriate to add to this “definition” at the end. These same individuals or communities did not care or were not concerned when these activities that produced fossil fuels for their consumption occurred in other communities or countries and these same communities were happy to develop in a manner that made them dependent on other communities to sustain themselves, i.e., NIMBY.

8. hydraulic fracturing – Also referred to as hydrofracking, hydrofracturing, and fracking, is a well development process that involves injecting water under high pressure into a bedrock formation via the well. This is intended to increase the size and extent of existing bedrock fractures.  (Thanks USGS-

Not a great definition and the second sentence is misleading.

I do not like the term.  This term was the slang word used in the Batttlestar Galatica series as the “F” word – “Frac”.  This series was about an epic battle between man and machine.  NOW – it possible to view this change in energy production as a battle between big oil and humans- this is not the battle.  The battle is with us – We are the users, consumers, and wasters of this valuable resource that has been developed on this Earth over millions of years.  It is not renewable, but a high energy source that has powered the improvement of our health, safety, and welfare.  As our technology grows – we will develop new and more “renewable energy sources”, but we have to do our part to conserve energy and use it wisely.

My definition

1. Use the word – hydraulic fracturing and is one phase of an overall process.  The phases include drilling, installing protective casing, cementing, hydraulic fracturing, developing, and production.

2. Process that uses a slick water solution – This chemical solution is dangerous to handle and not suitable for consumption or direct contact without proper training and personal protective equipment.  The chemical solution is made up of 99.5 % water  that has been modified through the use of chemicals and other agents that prevent bacterial growth (i.e., biocide), dissolve carbonate scales (acids- HCL and citric acid), friction reduces (change the density of water – can be toxic- mineral oil, polyacrylamide (used in agriculture and soil stabilization potential health issue), corrosion inhibitors (n,n-dimethylformamide,  glycols (toxic)), surfactants (soaps/isopropanal),  gelling agents (gums/cellulose), crosslinkers (borate salts), breakers (ammonia persulfate), salts (KCL)  and propant (sand /ceramics)- Nice Image and Other Pdf.

An aside: The issue is not the chemicals used – but the potential for exposure – the primary exposure potential would be related to chemicals and releases in the environment during transport or surface storage and use.  The main defense would be controlling the movement of the chemicals into and through the community and the use of multiple containment systems for surface storage.  When the target formation is 3000 + feet below grade, the vertical migration of the fluid up to freshwater zones has an extremely low probability of occurrence.  Is it zero – NO, but the other pathways are more likely.

3. The fluid is injected under high pressure to overcome the weight of the material over the target formation.  Since the target formation is a shale, the shale has natural bedding plane fractures (looks like a book from the side), near vertical stress fractures, and curvilinear fractures associated with internal gas stress.  These fractures are not interconnected.  The hydraulic process aids in the parting of existing fractures, removing carbonate scales or coatings along bedding planes/fractures, and parting the formation enough to push sand or other proppant into this location to hold the fractures apart.  This stabilized pathway permits the gas and/or oil to escape at the lowest point of pressure, i.e., the casing and borehole that were constructed during the drilling phase.

This is a work in progress.  We would suggest viewing the following websites:

Private Well Owners Guide –
Links to presentations on water quality issues, movies/videos on well drilling, hydraulic fracturing, and gas production.   Movies and information about problems- Methane gas migration, loose of circulation, chemical changes, spills, and the need for changes in oil and gas law.


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 Keystone Clean Water Team (CCGG 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 !   Get educated on Drinking Water Quality in Pennsylvania.

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

Keystone Clean Water Team /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.  The IRS Officially Approved Name change to the Keystone Clean Water Team by the IRS.  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).





Pennsylvania Well Owners Residents Submit Data to the Citizens Database

For 2014 – ROA Number – 2  – Citizens Database

For the past 20+ years, Mr. Brian Oram has been conducting water quality analysis, baseline testing, and conducting education programs for the citizens of Pennsylvania.  Even though our groundwater resources are one of our most important assets, there is limited data on the quality and quantity of regional groundwater. While working at Wilkes University, he helped establish the formation of a “Citizen” Groundwater and Surfacewater Database.  Even though he no longer work full-time at Wilkes University, he is working with the Keystone Clean Water Team,   Dr. Brian Redmond,  and Dr. Sid Halsor on the development, formation, and creation of this community tool.  This regional  water quality database is an unbiased warehouse of water quality data that is supported by fellow “Citizens” of this Commonwealth.   After reviewing this information, we would hope you will take action and support the PA Citizens Groundwater and Surfacewater Database and Contribute to the PA Private Well Owner and Watershed Survey, but if you outside of Pennsylvania we will still provide assistance with reviewing your data and maintain a record.  For private well owners and water systems outside of Pennsylvania, please participate in this survey.

The database will provide information about the current state of groundwater and surface water quality and serve as a basis for monitoring impacts related to Marcellus gas drilling and other activity in our region.  The purpose of our database is twofold. We will use it to help us better understand the current and future groundwater and surface water quality for the region. The database will also be used to generate educational materials relating to regional water quality. The database is for research and education purposes, and will not be sold or used for any commercial purpose. The database is managed by representatives of the Environmental Engineering and Earth Sciences Department at Wilkes University, i.e., Dr. Brian Redmond and Dr. Sid Halsor.  To protect your privacy, the research database file will only include the testing results, zip code, general information on well or water source, and the latitude and longitude of the sampling site. Your name, address, or other contact information will NOT be included within the database.

To learn More – go to Citizen Science and the Citizen Groundwater/ Surfacewater Database– The Concept

You can send a copy of your certified testing data- It is FREE!

In order to participate in this process, please do the following:

1. Information Document about the Program (Download a copy – fill it out -Please Keep for Your Reference).
2. Download a copy of the Consent Form to release to the Database and Sign and Return.
3. Send a copy of your certified laboratory testing results with Chain-of-Custody Documents.
4. Mail this information to:

Mr. Brian Oram, PG
Keystone Clean Water Team
15 Hillcrest Drive
Dallas, PA 18612
Questions  – call (570) 335-1947
or send a pdf version by email to


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.  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.

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.  Waiting on Official Name change to the Keystone Clean Water Team by the IRS.  Unsolicited donations are appreciated.

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

Webinars Potential Impacts of Hydraulic Fracturing on Drinking Water by the Environmental Protection Agency

CLU-IN’s ongoing series of Internet Seminars are free, web-based slide presentations with a companion audio portion. We provide two options for accessing the audio portion of the seminar: by phone line or streaming audio simulcast.   Past summaries and presentations are also available.  To register for any Webinar.

Case Studies to Assess Potential Impacts of Hydraulic  Fracturing on Drinking Water Resources

On July 30, 2013, EPA hosted a Hydraulic Fracturing Study Technical Workshop on Case Studies to Assess Potential Impacts of Hydraulic Fracturing on Drinking Water Resources. This one-hour webinar will provide a summary of the workshop and cover workshop themes.

Sep 12, 2013
11:00AM-12:00PM EDT
15:00-16:00 GMT

Hazard System Labeling System – 6 Modules
The Hazard Ranking System (HRS) webinar series is an intermediate-level course designed for personnel who are required to compile, draft and review preliminary assessments (PA), site inspections (SI), and HRS documentation records/packages submitted for proposal to the National Priorities List (NPL). The course is intended for EPA Regional, state, tribal and contractor personnel, who support EPA in the Superfund site assessment/NPL listing process.

This course assumes a basic understanding of the HRS and its context within the site assessment process. The training course is intended to enable staff to prepare HRS packages for the NPL and to plan PAs and SIs to address future HRS scoring issues. This training course provides details of the structure and application of the revised HRS and information related to the preparation of HRS packages, including HRS scoresheets, documentation records and site summaries. The course will incorporate an interactive case study to provide practical application of the HRS.

The webinar series consists of six two-hour sessions over three weeks. In order to receive credit for taking the course, participants must participate in each session. If you are unable to make one of the sessions, archived versions will be made available at that you can take to receive credit for the missed live session. In order to receive credit for a missed session, you must complete the missed session within 2 months of the originally scheduled date and submit an evaluation form from that archived module.

This introductory module will provide an overview of the regulatory context of the HRS, the site assessment process and the HRS structure. It will also include a presentation of documentation requirements under the HRS and a discussion of preparing HRS packages.

Oct 15, 2013
1:00PM-3:00PM EDT
17:00-19:00 GMT

CEC Training for OSCs…Pipeline Emergencies

Approximately 327,000 miles of natural gas transmission pipelines, 1.8 million miles of natural gas distribution pipelines and 161,000 miles of liquid pipelines safely transport natural gas and a range of liquid petroleum products daily. Like any industry that deals with hazardous materials, there are potential risks in the manufacturing and transportation processes. Pipeline Emergencies is a 3-hour webinar training course that provides practical information on how to respond safely and effectively to pipeline incidents and emergencies.

The purpose of the course is to provide participants with the knowledge and understanding of the EPA’s regulatory authority regarding pipeline emergency planning and response operations, how pipelines operate, the common products that may be transported through both transmission and distribution pipeline systems, the various roles and responsibilities among emergency responders and government and industry when responding to an incident and pipeline emergency response operations.

The target audience for this webinar course is new and mid-career On-Scene Coordinators (OSC) with an interest in learning about pipeline emergencies. This webinar does not address tactics and field methodology as that information is better suited for face-to-face or field demonstration training.

Oct 2, 2013
1:00PM-4:00PM EDT
17:00-20:00 GMT


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..  Unsolicited donations are appreciated.

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

Wellness and Water 2013 WV Wesleyan College Buckhannon West Virginia

Wellness and Water 2013

June 29 – 30, 3013 ~ WV Wesleyan College, Buckhannon, WV

 Plenary Speakers, Panelists & Workshop Leaders:

Yuri Gorby, Associate Professor, Blitman Chair in Environmental Engineering

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY

Yuri Gorby earned his bachelor’s degree in biology from Bethany College, and his doctoral degree in microbiology from the University of New Hampshire. He served as a National Research Council Postdoctoral Fellow at the U.S. Geological Survey in Reston, VA, and the U.S. Department of Energy-funded Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland, WA. Prior to joining Rensselaer, he served as an assistant professor at the J. Craig Venter Institute, a nonprofit genomics institute in San Diego and Department of Marine and Environmental Biology at the University of Southern California. His interdisciplinary research is at the nexus of environmental engineering and biology. He is an accomplished microbial physiologist and bioprocess engineer who, in his work, embraces the use of controlled cultivation to understand the fundamental properties of bacteria for a range of applications. These include remediating contaminated water, developing alternative energy resources, and mitigating the impact of microbes on corrosion.  Contact: Yuri Gory,

Marc Glass, Principle, Downstream Strategies, Morgantown, WV

Mr. Glass has over twelve years of experience in environmental consulting and management. He is skilled in the evaluation and remediation of environmental contamination. His experience includes Phase I and Phase II environmental site assessments, petroleum and chlorinated solvent site investigations, design and installation of monitoring well networks, aquifer testing, asbestos and biological remediation and project supervision, preparation of facility Spill Prevention Plans for above-ground and underground storage tank facilities, and mold investigation and remediation.

Contact: Marc Glass,, (304) 292-2450

Rob Goodwin, Coordinator, Citizens’ Enforcement Project

Coal River Mountain Watch, Whitesville, WV

Rob Goodwin grew up in the Adirondack Mountains of Northern New York State and received a B.S. in Surveying Engineering Technology from the University of Maine in 2009. He then moved to WV as a volunteer with Coal River Mountain Watch, a WV Non-profit that has a mission to stop the destruction of WV communities and environment by mountaintop removal mining, to improve the quality of life in WV and to help rebuild sustainable communities. Early in 2010, Rob started the citizens’ enforcement project with Coal River Mountain Watch with a goal of connecting with citizens adversely affected by the impacts of coal mining in Southern, WV. Since 2010, the work of the citizen enforcement project has consulted with dozens of citizens across the state to help them navigate the frustrating processes that citizens have at their disposal to address mining impacts. Frequent Black water spills, dust, blasting and a looming threat of flooding in the area are all issues that citizens are using the tools at their disposal in efforts to have their concerns addressed. Contact: Rob Goodwin,, (304)-854-2182

Brian Oram, BF Environmental Consultants, Dallas, PA and Carbon County Groundwater Guardians

Brian Oram is a licensed professional geologist and soil scientist with over 20 years experience in applied earth and environmental sciences.  He has conducted research and consulting projects related to acid mine drainage ( AMD ), mine drainage, lake and stream monitoring programs, wetland creation and monitoring, filtration plant performance evaluations, testing new point of use water treatment devices and systems, hydrogeological evaluations, geological investigations, soils testing, soil morphological evaluations, water well drilling and construction, drinking water testing, mail order water testing kit program, private well water testing programs, and land reclamation. He has also been involved with Citizen Monitoring and other Environmental Training Programs for groups within the United States, Europe, and the former Soviet Union.  Brian also works with a private well owner education outreach group and a regional RC&D Council. Contact: Brian Oram,, (570)-335-1947

Panel Discussion (pdf)


Leslie Fields, Program Director

Sierra Club Environmental Justice & Community Partnerships, Washington, DC

Leslie Fields has worked extensively on natural resource extraction issues on an international level, as well as on climate change and water privatization. In addition to her work with the Sierra Club she is also an adjunct professor at Howard University School of Law, co-teaching international environmental law. She formerly served as International Director of Friends of the Earth-U.S., and has worked with community groups, nonprofits, the private sector and all levels of government.

Contact: Office: Leslie Fields,, (202)-548-4586

Elisa Young, Founder, Meigs Citizens Action Now, Racine, OH

Elisa Young is an environmental activist from Racine, OH. She lives on farmland that has been her family for 7 generations. She originally dreamed of starting a sustainable living and teaching center and farming organically, but found herself embroiled in coalfield struggles.  With four power plants visible from their farm, her community has the highest asthma and lung cancer death rate in the state, the shortest life expectancy, and are in the top 3rd percentile for the worst air quality in the nation.  When five more plants were proposed, threatening to make her community the largest concentration of coal-fired power plants in the nation (nine within an 11.5-mile radius) she founded the grassroots community group, Meigs Citizens Action Now!  More recently she has been concerned with the potential impacts associated with horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing in Ohio, particularly the issues and risks associated with waste injection wells.  Contact: Elisa Young,

Grant Smith, Energy Policy Analyst, Civil Society Institute, Newton, MA

Grant Smith has been an energy policy analyst with the Civil Society Institute since June 2011.  Prior to joining CSI, he was employed by the Citizens Action Coalition of Indiana (CAC).  At CAC, he served as ED from 2004 to 2011, as energy and utilities director from 1998 to 2004, and as environmental coordinator from 1986 to 1998.  His responsibilities at CAC included organizing, research and writing, lobbying and media work.  He began at CAC as a canvasser.  From 2006 to 2011, he advised CSI on energy policy issues. Contact: Grant Smith,, (317)-442-8802

Dave Hanna, Onsite Training Director, New Visions Renewable Energy, Philippi, WV

Dave Hanna is Onsite Training Director for New Visions Renewable Energy. He is also a member of their technical team, which helps community members become knowledgeable with the concepts and principles of renewable energy systems and provided assistance on how to build and install electrical and/or hot water solar systems for their home or community facility. New Visions is a growing grassroots, community-based organization working to ReEnergize communities to implement renewable energy solutions. New Vision is an educational and innovation movement focusing on applicable technologies within the emerging “green” economy and serving as a hub of collaborative discussion, training and invention bringing together green innovators, community leaders, youth, companies, organizations as well as public and private partners.

Contact: New Visions Renewable Energy,, (304) 457 2971

Sam Malone, Manager of Science & Communications, FracTracker, Pittsburgh, PA

Sam Malone has worked with FracTracker since its inception in 2010 as a project of CHEC at the University of Pittsburgh. With FracTracker, she provides user and partner support, coordinates internal and external communications, and conducts and translates environmental health research for the website. She also manages FracTracker’s student internship program. Sam obtained a master of public health degree from Pitt’s Graduate School of Public Health and is currently working on a doctorate of public health from the school’s Environmental and Occupational Health department. In July 2011, she was awarded a U.S. State Department and Duquesne University travel grant, where she spent a month in Ghana participating in the Emerging Leaders’ Extraction and Environment Program. Recently, Sam was appointed to the City of Pittsburgh’s Propel Pittsburgh Commission and serves on its Environment committee. Contact: Sam Malone,, (412)-802-0273

Aaron Sutch, Energy Program Manager

The Mountain Institute (Appalachian Program), Morgantown, WV

Aaron Sutch is based in Morgantown and specializes in energy and resource management.  He started out as a classroom teacher and zoological education specialist. Prior to joining The Mountain Institute he worked for the Alliance to Save Energy in the Green Schools and Green Campus programs.  He also served as an Energy Storage Fellow at Technology Transition Corporation and interned at Solar Costa Rica, S.A. in San José Costa Rica.  He completed his undergraduate work in Languages and Linguistics at Florida Atlantic University and received dual M.A.’s in International Affairs and Natural Resources, and Sustainable Development-Energy Policy from the American University School of International Service and United Nations University for Peace.   Contact:  Aaron Sutch,

Laura Rigell, Swarthmore Divestment Campaign, Swarthmore, PA

Laura Rigell just finished her first year at Swarthmore College, where she is a member of Swarthmore Mountain Justice.  This student group is campaigning for divestment from fossil fuels.  In 2011, Swarthmore students launched the first such campaign in the county.  Before starting at Swarthmore, Laura took a gap year to co-found the Tennessee Youth Environmental Network, a coalition of high school environmental clubs, in her home state.  This summer, she is working as an intern with Coal River Mountain Watch to make conservation easements more accessible in southern West Virginia.  At Swarthmore, Laura is designing a major titled “Sustainable Land Use,” and hopes to work on land reform in the future. Contact:  Laura Rigell,, (865) 254-3289

Saturday Evening Entertainment

East Run Bluegrass Band, Doddridge County, WV

East Run started in 1997 and is based in Doddridge County, West Virginia. They have been playing fairs, festivals, parties, bars and halls all over West Virginia and beyond for the past ten years. Over the years an eclectic mix of bluegrass based music has emerged. In the past, all the members have performed in bands spanning many genres of music, such as blues, rock, country, heavy metal, jam bands, punk and swing. Jeff Powell (Guitar) has played with many notable bands, and has written many of East Run’s original tunes. Wayne Woods (Banjo) is originally from Taylor County, WV and got started in music playing bluegrass with his father, Neil Woods. Wayne sings lead vocal on many tunes. Chris Rossi is a talented mandolin player from Greensburg, Pennsylvania. Chris is a disciplined player with a style drawing from New Grass, Swing and Southern Rock. With the addition of WV music veteran Rus Reppert on bass, the music is evolving into new sounds and dimensions.

Contact: Wayne Woods,, (304) 782-3054

Contact Information for Conference Sponsors

Doddridge County Watershed AssociationChristina Woods,, (304) 782-3054

Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition (
Robin Blakeman,, (304)-840-4877

Sierra Club ( Bill Price,, (304)-389-8822

West Virginia Highlands Conservancy (

Cindy Rank,, (304)-924-5802

WV Surface Owners’ Right Organization (
Julie Archer,, (304)-346-5891

Additional Resources ~ was created as a platform for educating citizens about the environmental impacts of hydraulic fracturing and providing tools and guidance for effective citizen action and advocacy. The editors of this site are volunteers with watershed and conservation groups in both West Virginia and neighboring states.

One of our Presentations For West Virginia
Education Booklet for Private Well Owners (Proceeds Support Groundwater Education in Pennsylvania)

Wellness and Water 2013 WV Wesleyan College, Buckhannon,WV

Wellness and Water 2013

June 29 – 30, 3013 ~ WV Wesleyan College, Buckhannon,WV


Saturday Morning: Bringing concerned citizens and facts together

8:00 – 9:00 am ~ Registration ~ Continental Breakfast, Coffee & Tea available

9:00- 9:15 am ~ Welcome and Introductions

9:15 – 10:00 am ~ Plenary: Dr. Tom Darrah, Duke University

10:00 – 10:20 am ~ Q & A

For More Information

10:20 – 10:30 am ~ Break

10:30 – 11:30 am ~ Panelists:

  • Marc Glass, Downstream Strategies
  • Rob Goodwin, Coal River Mountain Watch
  • Yuri Gorby, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (NY)
  • Brian Oram, B.F. Environmental Consultants and the Carbon County
    Groundwater Educators

Each panelist will have 10-15 minutes for an initial presentation of their work related to monitoring impacts of MTR and gas drilling. Q & A will follow entire panel presentations, until noon.

 noon – 1pm ~ Lunch


Saturday Afternoon: To whom does all this matter?

1 – 1:15 pm ~ Gathering time

Please be in your seats by 1:15 pm. Announcements may be made between 1 and 1:15 pm.

1:15 – 2:00 pm ~ Plenary: Leslie Fields, Sierra Club
2:00 – 2:15 pm ~ Q & A

2:15 – 3:15 pm ~ Affected Resident Panelists:
Coal mining affected:

  • Nada White, Boone and Kanawha counties, WV
  • Danny Cook, Boone County, WV
  • Lorelei Scarbro, Raleigh County, WV

Gas drilling affected:

  • Leann Kiner, Harrison County, WV
  • Donna Herd, Doddridge County, WV
  • Jeanne Moten, Washington County, PA

3:15 – 3:30 pm ~ Q & A

3:30 – 3:45 pm ~ Break and workshop set-up

3:45 – 5:15 pm ~ Workshops:

  • Rob Goodwin, Coal River Mountain Watch ~ Mapping of slurry impoundments and coal mine sites
  • Elisa Young ~ Problems of waste disposal and water extraction affecting the Ohio River
  • Brian Oram, B.F. Environmental Consultants ~ “Working as a Community – We ALL Live Downstream” on the need for proper baseline testing and the most likely types of influence or adverse impacts associated with natural gas development
  • New Visions Solar ~ Solar powered water filtration system and “homemade” solar power

5:30 pm ~ Dinner

Saturday Evening: Music & Socializing – Main Meeting Room, Student Center

7 pm – ??? ~ Featuring music by East Run (Bluegrass band)


Sunday Morning: What can we do about the problems created by extreme fossil fuel extraction in our region?

 8:00 – 9:00 am ~ Registration ~ Continental Breakfast, Coffee & Tea available

9:00 – 9:15 am ~ Welcome and Announcements

9:15 – 10:00 am ~ Plenary: Grant Smith, Civil Society Institute

10:00 – 10:15 am ~ Q & A

10:15 – 11:15 am ~ Solution Focused Panelists:

  • Pam O’Brien, New Visions Solar, Solar power and solar powered water filtration devices
  • Sam Malone, FracTracker: Exploring data, sharing perspectives, mapping impacts of the gas industry
  • Aaron Sutch, Energy Program Manager for the Mountain Institute
  • Laura Rigell, Swathmore College Divestment Campaign

Each panelist will have 10-15 minutes for an initial presentation of their work. Q & A will follow entire panel presentations, until 11:30 am.

11:30 – 11:40 am ~ Break

11:40 am – 12:30 pm ~ Roundtable Discussions (facilitated by Bill Price, Sierra Club)

12:30 – 12:45 pm ~ Wrap Up & Evaluations

12:45 – 1:45 pm ~ Lunch

For More Information

If you are in Pennsylvania, you can contribute to the Citizen Groundwater Database and help track change for FREE and if you would like to learn about our Natural Gas Related Information, please visit us at

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.

Environmental Protection Agency Dramatically Lowered Methane Loss During Drilling

“PITTSBURGH (AP) — The Environmental Protection Agency has dramatically lowered its estimate of how much of a potent heat-trapping gas leaks during natural gas production, in a shift with major implications for a debate that has divided environmentalists: Does the recent boom in fracking help or hurt the fight against climate change?

Oil and gas drilling companies had pushed for the change, but there have been differing scientific estimates of the amount of methane that leaks from wells, pipelines and other facilities during production and delivery. Methane is the main component of natural gas.

The new EPA data is “kind of an earthquake” in the debate over drilling, said Michael Shellenberger, the president of the Breakthrough Institute, an environmental group based in Oakland, Calif. “This is great news for anybody concerned about the climate and strong proof that existing technologies can be deployed to reduce methane leaks.”

For the whole story

For Methane Issues in Pennsylvania
For Fact Based Review of Dimock

Using Nitrogen and other Gases to Hydraulicly Fracture Black Shale Fields

“Typically, nitrogen is delivered to the well site as a refrigerated liquid that is gasified prior to injection and then is injected into the well to enhance recovery.  As the primary component of the air we breathe, the benefits of nitrogen include it being inert, environmentally friendly, non-flammable, and when gasified, exhibiting very low densities with large expansion factors. These properties make nitrogen the perfect choice for safely and efficiently tackling the toughest well needs.”

Interesting Links

Ferus Website on Nitrogen
Superior Well Services- B.F. Environmental (Nitrogen Gas Frac Library)
Gas Frac B.F. Environmental (Nitrogen Gas Frac Library)
EPA Report on Types of Hydraulic Fracturing Fluids
Information on FracWater Chemistry and Flowback Water

Website Provided for Educational Purpose.

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.

 Carbon County Groundwater Guardians on Facebook

Fact Sheet: Methane Gas Migration and Mitigation

Methane gas has been a “hidden” problem in Northeastern Pennsylvania.  The gas is typically associated with wetlands, bogs, landfills, coal-producing formations, natural saline seeps, some glacial deposits, and gas storage areas.  Because of the development of the Marcellus Shale, the presence of methane gas and the potential for methane gas migration is a growing concern.   Methane is a colorless, odorless gas that is lighter than air.   Natural gas is mostly methane (70 – 90 % CH4), carbon dioxide (0 to 8 % CO2), plus other gases.  The other gases may include ethane (C2H6), propane (C3H8), butane (C4H10), and hydrogen sulfide (H2S) as well as small amounts of helium.

Methane gas is highly flammable between a lower explosion limit (LEL) of 5.53 percent by volume in air and an upper explosion limit (UEL) of 15 percent.  These percentages are equivalent to a methane concentration of 50,000 and 150,000 parts per million (ppm) in air.  The minimum concentration level at which the gas has the potential to explode is called the lower explosive limit (LEL); below the LEL level there is not enough gas to cause an explosion.  Above the UEL, there is inadequate oxygen to fuel combustion, but if the space is vented and the gas concentration drops below the UEL, the gas can become diluted enough to explode (it would require an ignition source).  Methane is not considered toxic, but it is an asphyxiant at a concentration of over 50 percent in air (it displaces oxygen).  Therefore, the primary risks for methane would be asphyxiation in a confined or poorly vented area or a potential explosion hazard.   As a safety measure, the natural gas industry adds mercaptans to the produced methane gas that enters the pipeline and your home. The mercaptans produce a very pungent odor so that gas leaks will be noticed, but unprocessed methane gas tends to have NO ODOR.  It is critical to note that some unprocessed methane gas may contain long chain hydrocarbon molecules that can create an odor.

From the available data in the Citizen Groundwater/Surfacewater Database, it would appear that the natural background level of methane in private wells in Northeastern Pennsylvania ranges from not detectable or trace levels to over 28 mg/L.  You may suspect the presence of methane gas in your water if you hear a “gurgling noise”, sputtering at the tap, the water has a lot of gas bubbles, is effervescent or fizzy.  

Note: If the pumping level of water in your well starts to fall below your pump intake, ordinary air may mix with the water and produce similar symptoms. When in doubt, contact a professional to determine the nature of the observed gas.

For more on this topic – Methane Gas Migration
Citizen Groundwater and Surfacewater Database