Drilling Permits are “Flying Out the Door” in PA

Philadelphia Inquirer (Nov 2):
Editorial: Shale game

In an editorial, the Philly Inquirer revisits drilling in the Marcellus Shale in Pennsylvania. The editorial is mostly a rehash of old information and the theme is, “New York’s recently proposed drilling regulations are more strict than Pennsylvania’s, we need to get more strict too.”

But, they also include this bit of detail that’s useful for landowners in PA to know:

Drilling permits are flying out of DEP’s doors. Through Sept. 30, 1,340 Marcellus permits were issued and 385 wells drilled – more than double the number from last year. And the just-completed state budget requires the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources to raise $60 million by leasing up to 10,000 more acres of public forest land to drillers in the next year, a goal driven by a revenue grab rather than environmental stewardship.

  • when you say that permits issued to LEASE on 10k of public land, does this include PA Game Comm. lands? I have gas/oil mineral rights on 107 contiguous acres on Game Land #57 Wyoming Cnty Pa that I can’t get a response about from any company willing to drill there. I want to sell these rights as I don’t own the land. Our lawyer says we have clear titles to this land, which was sold to individuals for hunting use, and subsequently was purchased by PPL and sold to the Game Comm. in 1989.

  • Jim

    Good question Rich. I do not know the specific answer. Another commenter left a similar comment about private individuals who own the mineral rights to land that is now public land. I will be on the lookout for more details and will write about it in the future as I learn more about it.