PA College of Technology to Offer Marcellus Gas Drilling Courses to High Schoolers in Northern and Central PA

The Pennsylvania College of Technology (part of the Penn State University system) continues to innovate by offering training for those interested in jobs and careers in the gas drilling industry. This time, they’re offering courses to high schoolers:

The National Science Foundation has awarded a $294,689 grant to the Pennsylvania College of Technology to educate and train high school and college students for careers in the Marcellus Shale natural gas industry, according to officials from the college and a press release issued this week by U.S. Rep. Chris Carney’s office.

The college will use much of the money to develop and implement college-level courses that will be offered at high schools in Bradford, Sullivan and other counties to provide training that will be useful in jobs in the natural gas extraction industry, said Jenette Carter, Pennsylvania College of Technology’s director of outreach for K-12.

The high school courses will benefit students from 23 school districts in central and northern Pennsylvania…The high school courses for which college credit will be granted are technical or vo-tech courses in areas such as welding, electronics, diesel technology, heavy equipment operation and repair, forestry, and information technology (networking).*

*Towanda Daily Review (May 6) – High school courses that will lead to careers in gas industry being implemented locally

Delaware River Basin Commission to Landowners and Drillers: We’re Taking Our Time

As MDN has previously reported, the Delaware River Basin Commission (DRBC) continues to block drilling in the Marcellus Shale anywhere within the DRBC’s jurisdiction. The delays in drilling will continue at least until sometime in 2011 (MDN’s estimate) due to an extended public comment period on new regulations they are drafting, and from their previous statements about waiting for a federal grant “later this year” to study drilling. If you own land in the Delaware River Basin, or you’re a drilling company in that area, good luck. All signs point to an anti-drilling group of Commission members who are intentionally dragging their feet.

From a press release issued by the DRBC today:

(WEST TRENTON, N.J.)—The Delaware River Basin Commission (DRBC) at its May 5, 2010 public business meeting directed commission staff to draft regulations for natural gas well pad projects in shale formations in the Delaware River Basin. The commissioners will consider specific natural gas well pad applications after the new regulations are in place.

“The drafting process is already underway, so it made logical sense for the development of new regulations to move forward in advance of any individual project decisions,” DRBC Executive Director Carol R. Collier said in describing the action taken yesterday by the commissioners representing Delaware, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, and the federal government. The rulemaking process will include public notice and a full opportunity for public comment before the commissioners adopt the regulations.

The DRBC has already conducted a public hearing and received over 2,000 written comments regarding a proposal previously submitted by Stone Energy Corporation for the Matoushek #1 well located in Clinton Township, Wayne County, Pa. The commissioners’ decision to rule upon this and other pending and future specific natural gas well pad project applications after the new regulations are adopted is consistent with many of the public comments submitted.

Commission review of pending or future proposed water withdrawals to be used to supply water to natural gas extraction projects, including Stone Energy’s proposed water withdrawal from the West Branch Lackawaxen River in Mount Pleasant Township, Wayne County, Pa., will proceed in accordance with existing DRBC regulations. The written comments that the DRBC received during the comment period that closed on April 12 pertained to both Stone Energy’s proposed water withdrawal project and its proposed natural gas well drilling project. The earliest that the commission could vote on the Stone Energy proposed water withdrawal project would be its next public business meeting scheduled for July 14, 2010.

*Delaware River Basin Commission Press Release (May 6) – DRBC Will Review Natural Gas Well Pad Projects After Adoption of New Regulations