Forced Pooling for Landowners in the Marcellus Shale Region

Forced pooling is the concept that forces landowners to allow drilling under their property if enough of their neighbors have signed leases. Many people (PA Gov. Tom Corbett and MDN among them) think it’s not a good idea—calling it the equivalent of “private eminent domain.” But the reality is, it does widely exist. In fact, forced pooling exists (by various names) in all of the Marcellus Shale states except Maryland.

In New York and Pennsylvania its called compulsory integration. In West Virginia its called mandatory pooling, and in Virginia its called compulsory pooling. So when you hear those terms bandied about, it means “forced pooling.” A special note: Forced pooling provisions in both Pennsylvania and West Virginia do not (yet) apply to Marcellus Shale drilling, but proponents are trying to make it happen in those states.

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MarkWest, Range Resources File Legal Appeal Over Denial of Permit for Gas Compressor Station in Cecil, PA

MarkWest wants to build a Marcellus Shale gas compressor station in Cecil Township (Washington County), PA. They filed an application for a “special exception” to allow them to build the plant but were denied by the zoning board. On April 21, MarkWest filed an appeal in Washington County civil court to have the decision overturned. MarkWest said at the time it hopes to settle the matter “amiably” but was filing to “preserve its rights.” Part of the appeal states:

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