How Many “Large Ponds” Does it Take to Frac All of the Marcellus Gas Wells Drilled in PA in 2010? Hint: You Can Count it on One Hand

In a letter to the editor of the Times Observer (Warren, PA), letter writer Dave White makes a plea for common sense and balance in the discussion of drilling in the Marcellus. In particular, he makes a few statements of interest about the volume of water resources used, and disposed of, in the drilling process in PA:

My goal here is to bring a realistic picture of the real magnitude of fracturing water… First Energy tells us the reservoir 800 feet up on Jakes Rocks Road holds 2 billion gallons of water. How much is 2 billion gallons of water? In one large pond in Warren County lies enough water to frac almost all of the Marcellus wells drilled to date in Pennsylvania. First Energy probably pumps a billion gallons of water up there every night. And they drop it back down every day. In forty years I’ve never noticed a ripple on the Allegheny "recreational" river.

The next item to bring into reality, 2.8 million barrels of treated frac water being released into eight rivers. How much is that? When the river is flowing as it is today, 2.8 million barrels goes under the Hickory Street Bridge every 13 minutes. The Allegheny River share of eight rivers would pass under the bridge in 1.6 minutes. Keep in mind this is all the treated fracture water to date.(1)

Continue reading

Pittsburgh Economy Surged in 2010 Due Mostly to Marcellus Shale Drilling

It seems everywhere high volume hydraulic fracturing (for either gas or oil) happens in a big way, the economy of that region surges. Recently we told you about the Bakken Oil fields of North Dakota (see here) which has led to the lowest unemployment rates of any state the country. The latest example of the benefits of “fracking” is Pittsburgh, which has resurged precisely because of natural gas drilling in the Marcellus Shale:

Continue reading

Will Marcellus Shale Drilling Come to a “Grinding Halt” in West Virginia?

MDN is not sure how much sway the editorial pages of local newspapers hold when it comes to policy-making in state government (we suspect not much). But it is noteworthy that the Register-Herald (Beckley, West Virginia) is urging a moratorium on any new Marcellus Shale drilling in the state until the legislature can reconvene in special session and pass laws addressing concerns over Marcellus drilling in the state.

The WV legislature recently ended their regular session without passing new regulations for Marcellus drilling, which prompted acting Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin to instruct the state DEP to regulate drilling on their own (see here). The Register-Herald doesn’t like that idea and wants to see the legislature take another crack at passing new laws:

Continue reading