Pennsylvania

Energy. Environment. Economy.

DEP relied on gas driller for Franklin Forks investigation, candidate claims

Democratic gubernatorial candidate John Hanger criticized DEP's handling of a water contamination case during a press conference in Wilkes-Barre.

Laura Legere / StateImpact Pennsylvania

Democratic gubernatorial candidate John Hanger criticized DEP's handling of a water contamination case during a press conference in Wilkes-Barre.

Democratic gubernatorial candidate John Hanger is accusing the Department of Environmental Protection of giving a natural gas drilling company too much influence over the agency’s investigation of a high-profile water contamination complaint in Susquehanna County.

Hanger, a former DEP secretary, said Thursday that DEP handed key portions of its investigation into the cause of high levels of methane, metals and salt in the groundwater in Franklin Forks to WPX Energy, the company accused of damaging the water supplies.

Consultants for WPX produced a 375-page report for DEP last December that concluded that the well water at three homes mirrored gas-tainted water historically found in the region and in a natural salt spring a mile and a half away. DEP reached the same conclusion in April when it determined that gas drilling was not to blame for the families’ water problems.

A DEP spokeswoman said the agency routinely asks for reports from companies suspected of causing environmental impacts and it also gathers information from people making complaints.

“Our determination is based totally on our 16-month investigation by our trained oil and gas specialists,” spokeswoman Colleen Connolly said. “We review all the evidence and reach our own independent conclusion. WPX Energy had no say in our conclusion.”

DEP has refused to release its own report of the investigation, citing a need to protect residents’ private information. DEP regularly makes available or redacts homeowners’ names, addresses and water quality data in its public files, but Connolly reiterated Thursday that DEP will not release the report “at this point.”

Hanger, who said he has not seen DEP’s report, said WPX’s involvement in the Franklin Forks investigation differs from normal information exchanges between regulators and companies.

“From what I can determine, this is a case where DEP has actually relied on WPX to do major parts of the investigation,” he said during a press conference outside DEP’s Wilkes-Barre office. “These investigations need to have DEP staff and DEP resources in charge.”

He called on DEP to conduct a new investigation that is “fully independent, transparent and thorough” and suggested that the state create an independent investigatory bureau to respond to complaints related to drilling activities.

Last week, Hanger called for DEP to reopen the Franklin Forks investigation to consider new data about the well water gathered by an Ohio State University scientist. Connolly said DEP will review any evidence Hanger provides, but the agency has not reopened the case.

In November, WPX won a court order to remove temporary water supplies it had installed last year at two Franklin Forks homes. The company dropped that effort on Friday and donated the water tanks to the families instead after critics called the company’s actions cold-hearted.

Comments

  • Victoria Switzer

    A gas company should not have anything to do with the investigation other than handing over evidence and answering questions. What other situation would you have the the company that is being investigated leading the investigation? Fox in the hen house? Tail wagging the dog? WHO should do the water testing????

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1522786448 Scott Cannon

    Video of the press conference http://youtu.be/nInTXb8S47Y

  • JimBarth

    What former Secretary Hanger accuses PA DEP of, seems to exactly parallel what happened in Pavillion Wyoming, more than five years ago. In that case, the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (CO’s version of PA DEP), allowed the driller/frac’er Encana to investigate the water well contamination that they were accused of causing.

    Encana returned with a report that found no contamination. The COGCC declared to the complainants, “no contamination”.

    I won’t go into the very sorry state of affairs that followed with Obama’s US EPA being withdrawn from the conflict after three years of investigation and millions of dollars spent, but suffice it to say that a lot more than Mr. Meeks’, and Mr. Fenton’s water stinks to high heaven.

    How long will citizens allow the regulatory agencies, many of the politicians, and the extraction companies, to “get away with murder”?

  • http://www.youtube.com/user/veraduerga Vera Scroggins

    Good to see folks , like John Hanger, and even the investors in WPX Stock protesting and speaking out about WPX and DEP abuses of the public trust…..

  • debra haddix

    .coals being regulated by the epa to the point of extinction ..but they turn a blind eye to the fracking industry. .government’s not going to regulate gas until they have killed of their only competitor (coal)

  • no-so-fast

    The truth is, the report submitted to PADEP by WPX Energy’s consultant’s is exactly what is required in section 78.89 of the Oil & Gas regulations. The very O&G regulations that were promulgated when John Hanger was PADEP Secretary. Those regulations require a comprehensive investigation, the results of which must be formalized in a written report signed and sealed by a PA licensed professional geologist and a licensed and professional engineer. Those licensed professionals are held to a scientific and engineering standard. Knowingly misinterpreting the data can result in disciplinary actions against those professionals. The reporting process includes a review of the report by PADEP. PADEP then determines, independently, if they approve or disagree with the findings. In addition, PADEP completes their own independent investigation, generating their own data and evaluation. These two independent reports were corroborative and that is why PADEP closed the investigation.

    The process is no different than any other environmental investigation involving a regulated activity in Pennsylvania, leaking underground storage tanks, Act 2 sites, etc.. The alternative is that PADEP, and hence the tax payers, pay for the investigation, which typically cost well into the 6 figures for each investigation.

    It’s very disturbing that these investigations continue to be so politicized by actors, and activists who are uneducated, misinformed, and clearly biased. Maybe if we require the same professional standard of the actors, and activists that is required of licensed professional geologists and engineers we will be begin to see a more intelligent debate from them.

    • JimBarth

      As an activist on the issue of HVSWMSHF and lateral drilling into shale, I would find “not-so-fast” a “teeny-bit-more” of interest and credibility if he wrote under his real name, instead of the silly nom de plume he chooses. To refer to me, or others he has no knowledge of as “uneducated, misinformed, and clearly biased”, shows his own raging bias, and poor argumentative skill.

      He may choose to believe all those swimmingly positive descriptions he wrote of the PADEP review process, but no one except the industry and it’s paid shills espouse that sentiment.

      The simple fact that PA DEP allowed the extraction company to formulate and write the primary report undermines everything this fellow, and PA DEP state. The rest is insinuation of a sequence of review, and, independent report by PA DEP, which I severely doubt happened.

      About three years ago, when Damascus Citizens for Sustainability brought suit against PA DEP regarding test wells drilled in Wayne County, it was discovered, under oath, that PA DEP spent approximately 35 minutes reviewing an application to drill, and, that it made no distinction between areas of high sensitivity, such as special protection waters/watersheds, and an already industrialized zone. Indeed, the PADEP staff could not even give the definition of such sensitive areas. That is the PA DEP performance the vast majority of Pennsylvanians have learned, through negative experience, to expect

      Mr. “not-so-fast” is extremely fast and loose with his “facts”. PADEP’s past performance does not at all meet the standards he described.

      • JimBarth

        Mr. “not-so-fast” should also realize we are talking about the Corbett PA DEP. In my opinion, Rendell, even though he rolled out the red carpet to the industry, creating a situation in which PA DEP had to constantly play “catch up”, at least made an effort to catch up! I would take Sec. Hanger, and Sec. Quigley of DCNR any day over Sec. “Delaware is shaped like the tail of a dog, and smells like the tail of a dog” Krancer, who went out of his way to create confrontations with any person, or State, that questioned Corbett’s ridiculous policies as they relate to shale gas extraction.

        The PA DEP “Suite Code” water testing controversy is another example of the impoverished performance by PA DEP under Corbett/Krancer. Here, I quote Rep. Jesse White who was a lead questioner on this issue, as it directly involved his district. In a comment to State Impact Pennsylvania, he wrote:
        “1. The claims about DEP’s training are suspect; in the sworn deposition of DEP water quality specialist John Carson, he admitted he had no specialized training for Marcellus Shale impacts, had no idea what to look for to know if groundwater was impacted from drilling, and confirmed the only requirement to be a DEP water specialist is a driver’s license. All his words, not mine.”

        Rep. White went on to write: “3. I agree there is a firewall between DEP labs and DEP field agents; in fact, it’s the crux of the whole problem. Although DEP’s lab tests for all 24 heavy metals under EPA Standard 200.7, by writing in Suite Code 942, the results of 16 of those 24 never make it from the lab to the field. And Suite Code 946 isn’t much better; it withholds 13 of the 24 heavy metals.”

        To the vast majority of sentient Pennsylvanians, this “Suite Code” scandal was yet another example of how Corbett was turning PA DEP into a “see no evil, hear no evil” department, as it related to shale gas extraction in PA.

        This is the reality of PA DEP under Corbett, and, it does not square with Mr. “not-so-fast”‘s version.

      • not-so-fast

        Take a deep breath and try to recall your reading comprehension skills Mr Jim Barth. No one is accusing you of being uneducated or misinformed unless you are an activist or an actor that has earned the title. The uneducated or misinformed characterization is based on the on-going statements from that group of people, and not evidence of “raging bias” or “poor argumentative skills”.

        You, apparently, have completely missed the point of my post, and that is this: Mr. Hanger accuses PADEP of relying on WPX Energy’s characterization of the site without doing their own investigation. Here is the problem with that accusation: 1) By conducting an investigation and submitting the results of that investigation in a formal report prepared by a professional geologist and engineer, WPX Energy was complying with the LAW. 2) PADEP completed their own independent investigation and came to the same conclusions as WPX’s consultants.

        DO your homework Mr Barth, and you will also learn that this is one of the few cases where PADEP actually agreed with the findings that the O&G operator did not cause the stray gas incident. There are far more gas migration cases where the PADEP has not ruled favorably for the O&G operator.

        As for bias, your statements of “paid shill” and “severely doubt” (without knowing the facts) clearly expose you.

        • JimBarth

          And of course, you choose to ignore my main point, which is that only those in the pocket of the extraction industry have the gall to profess “belief” that the Corbett PA DEP performed its own full “independent investigation”. Did you miss the heading of this article: “DEP relied on gas driller for Franklin Forks investigation, candidate claims”. That candidate is former Secretary of PA DEP, now gubernatorial candidate, John Hanger.

          You may continue to choose to ignore the two examples of the Department’s incompetence/deceitful behavior that I gave, at the same time you profess belief in PA DEP’s performance of science, and of following the wildly inadequate laws of our Commonwealth as they pertain to oil and gas extraction, but how do you square the contradiction you presented?

          On the one hand you state, “PADEP completes their own independent investigation, generating their own data and evaluation”. In virtually the next sentence you wrote, “The alternative is that PADEP, and hence the tax payers, pay for the investigation, which typically cost well into the 6 figures for each investigation.”

          If PA DEP performed its own independent investigation, why does it need the extraction company’s version? Why is former Sec. Hanger accusing PA DEP of relying on the extraction company’s version? Politics may be politics, but, truth will out. The election is 11 plus months away, there is plenty of time.

          If PA DEP performed its own independent investigation, on what basis do you state that neither PA DEP, nor the tax payers, paid for this independent investigation, that you go on to describe, “…which typically cost well into the 6 figures for each investigation.”?

          PA DEP did it’s own independent investigation, and evaluation, and didn’t pay for it?

          As for my reading comprehension, thank goodness this article is on State Impact Pennsylvania, instead of an E.I.D. Tom Shepstone blog (do they even exist anymore?).

          This article is about accusations made by John Hanger, yet you never mention him. Instead, you bizarrely state: “It’s very disturbing that these investigations continue to be so politicized by actors, and activists who are uneducated, misinformed, and clearly biased”. You never name anyone specifically, let alone one “that has earned the title” of that derogatory description, as you wrote in your response to me. You don’t back that blunderbuss statement up with any fact. You just put your post into a “taxi to the toilet”, by making derogatory statements about unnamed opposition.

          Congratulations on your lack of writing skill. We expect nothing more from your ilk.

          • JimBarth

            I would also add that a report prepared by WPX Energy is as reliable as “science” as a report prepared by Range Resources concerning the water well contaminations in Parker County, Texas, and while I’m at it, that any report done by Corbett’s PA DEP is as unreliable as a report on the same area that would have been done by The Texas Railroad Commission.

            I suggest n-s-f check the report released today by the Inspector General, on the EPA’s involvement in Parker County, TX.

            Sens. Inhofe and Cornyn can suck on their thumbs while digesting the report they requested to be undertaken, that took two years to complete, and that not only clears the EPA, and continues to implicate Range, but states the main worry is that all this time has passed and the existing conditions are still threatening the homeowners. What political pressure was exerted on the EPA to withdraw, is also an important matter. Perhaps, Sen. Inhofe would like to request an Inspector General’s investigation into the EPA’s actions in Pavillion, WY, and Dimock, PA?

            http://www.epa.gov/oig/reports/2014/20131220-14-P-0044.pdf

            http://switchboard.nrdc.org/blogs/amall/new_inspector_general_report_f.html

            Impacted, victimized home and property owners are just not going to take the good old boys assurances any more, no matter how poor the odds are they will get justice.

          • not-so-fast

            Mr. Barth,
            What is your profession?…Everything you write is a regurgitation of one side of a case that you have paraphrased from a media report. It’s obvious you know very little about the cases you cite. Consider the Pavillion, Wyoming investigation, that investigation was so flawed that EPA withdrew their DRAFT Report because it did not comply with the most basic standards (sorry, there was no conspiracy). In that case the evidence was overwhelming that the methane in the water supplies was of the same origin as the gas that occurs naturally in the aquifer…did you know that the allegedly impacted water wells were drilled into a known gas field?, that the methane concentrations were actually below baseline concentrations?)

            The discussion here is about WPX Energy and the Franklin Forks Investigation. Even though WPX Energy complied with the law, and even though PADEP conducted their own independent investigation corroborating the 3rd party report that indicated the gas in the water supplies is unrelated to gas well drilling activity, you chose to ignore those results because you don’t like them. Where is your empirical evidence to the contrary? Have you read the 3rd party report? Your views are only what you read, nothing in your statements suggest you actually know anything about any of the cases. Classic bias.

          • The_White_Rabbit

            Provide some actual reports and less BS.

        • The_White_Rabbit

          That is not true. PADEP nor USEPA has confirmed that there is no problem. Try to get some education on how the agencies work.

    • The_White_Rabbit

      Actually the con job is from types like “not so fast” that tries to promote these investigations as the norm. PADEP typically does NOT make reports confidential just due to containing residential reports. This is a lie and evidenced by the thousands of reports in typical PADEP file rooms. The residential data would not contain names/addresses in all of these common reports from other programs.

      USEPA has also confirmed that there is NO interpretative report for Dimock. So no one can say either way that USEPA has said there is no problem. While “notsofast” has stated professional standards, try to find out the identity of ONE PADEP/USEPA licensed professional geologist that will stand on the no problem as stated above. PADEP has only generated a PR statement but a public report is not available as common in other projects.

      Possibly if PR con artists would not try to promote these actions as normal there may be a bit more credibility to both agencies as well as the gas drilling companies.

    • The_White_Rabbit

      A decent vapor intrusion investigation (including definition of site specific background) would likley be much less that the six figure number you quote, unless you are hiring so ex PADEP high level bureaucrat to do the investigation.

  • FrackDaddy

    Hanger is a Fraud, Here are the INDEPENDENT companies that did the testing! They are approved by DEP.

    WPX Energy Appalachia hired Echelon Applied Geoscience Consulting and Moody and Associates Inc. to do the testing and studies required by DEP.

    • The_White_Rabbit

      They failed in doing typical vapor intrusion sampling common at most other sites, even much larger site very close. USEPA has claimed there is NO INTERPRETATIVE REPORT for Dimock where this was also done. In other words, the limited isotopic study has not been concurred as adequate by USEPA or PADEP at Franklin Forks or Dimock. In fact, the leaked USEPA powerpoint for Dimock states the isotopic analysis shows there is a a short and long term problem. Get you head out of your bureaucratic colon.

      • FrackDaddy

        That’s great hearsay! But until you have a fact to prove what you say, you are just another Jefferson Airplane fan! But you did hit all the Anti requirements for a comment. 1)Radical claims with no FACTS to back it up. 2)A government conspiracy 3)and everyone’s favorite…Name calling like a 14 year old girl. So all you have proved is you are a burnt out Hippie, Who has no degree in geology, Thinking you are smarter than anyone else! Nice try!

        • The_White_Rabbit

          USEPA has stated in response to a FOIA that there is NO INTERPRETATIVE REPORT FOR DIMOCK. Try to focus.

          • FrackDaddy

            The USEPA had enough to go to the sautners home, sit at their kitchen table and tell them the water is fine. If the deem they have enough testing I agree with them. And since you ARE not a geologist, You telling the USEPA what and how to test, is like them telling you how to be a paranoid eco nut.

          • The_White_Rabbit

            As I stated the FOIA for an interpretative report showed that there is NO USEPA report that states there is no problem. This is a lie and you probably know it. What USEPA person actually stated this to the Saunters? Cut the con job BS and give some facts.

          • FrackDaddy

            There is a video of it look it up………….

          • The_White_Rabbit

            Not too lazy to look up a video a ****ing gas company
            apologist puts online. Seems that the USEPA and ATSDR personnel are stating the results of initial analysis, not the complete data set. I suspect you are too lazy (although probably well paid) to look up an actual USEPA Toxicologist report available on the EPA On Scene Coordinator website at:
            http://www.epaosc.org/sites/7555/files/EPA%20Tox%20Memo%20-%20revised%201-11-12%20REDACTED.pdf
            Again, the USEPA response is for a FOIA on an interpretative report. This is NONE based on the official response. It is not uncommon that USEPA along with federal and state health officials will discuss preliminary data with residents. If you had any experience with environmental investigations you might realize that rather than take the video (not report) out of context. Thanks for the half baked discussion Frackdaddy, havent had this much fun since some pathetic ex PADEP Deputy Secretary threatened to toss me in jail for questioning his PR logic.

          • FrackDaddy

            Gas Company apologist? Lisa Barr is an Enviro Activist…Look it up! i am tired of doing the work for you.Just goes to show how close minded you are, You just assume I would send you EID propaganda, when instead I find it much more amusing to use your own Anti Science/Anti American friends to debunk your delusions! And why did you never address the EPA telling them there water is safe to drink? Didn’t fit your agenda? Just pop in your Jefferson Airplane 8 track, spark up a dobby and check the Science

          • The_White_Rabbit

            Well lets discuss it.

          • FrackDaddy
          • FrackDaddy
          • The_White_Rabbit

            First off, the links had provided to you are site specific Dimock reports. Not my opinion but public available Dimock information on most likely preliminary results.

            The first link is a good link for any well owner considering bacterial contamiantion due to sewage or other sources can be a major health threat. This link does not do very much on stating methane is a signicant background contaminant in wells.

            The New York report provides data and evaluations by the USGS on South Central New York. If you have read former posts you would realize that to determine background you just can’t assume a naturally occurring spring (Salt Spring State Park) is common for other wells. The only real way is to have pre drilling samples (which some companies do) for comparision, or after the fact a good characterization of the potential plume that includes background organics and inorganics. This report is good information but not relevant to a small specific area in Pennsylvania. Possible that I don’t have all the information on what characterization was done but seems you have not provided much on that line. You cannot assume isotopic analysis is an only tool especially if criticized in the EPA Powerpoint that states there could be a short and long term problem. Air risk can only be done with sampling like 24-hour (Summa) canisters. Feel free to point out specifics that I might not be aware of.

            Again, both sides need to use technical logic and debate issues. There are many other industries in your area that have assessed and abated problems with minimal outrage. Would be interesting to see how you could debate your points at a meeting. Both sides have good points but seems that what good work the overall industry has done is destroyed by lack of normal procedures at specific sites. I

          • FrackDaddy

            I understand your site specific report of Dimock wells, My first link although it does refer to bacteria, The point I was hoping you got from it is that PA does not or has never had water well regulations, Which means they are not inspected or regulated so any fly by night company can come drill a well and if water comes up they take the check and leave. Also note later in the paper it states that people have never thought to test for such things (very true I know many people surprised to see results from our predrilling tests, myself included). In an area KNOW for methane, I know SS State Park is always the talking point, but the truth is there is natural methane and large methane pockets all over this county, And I am sure you could agree that with no regs on the drilling of the water well it is hard to determine who is at fault if Methane issues occur. My second link regarding the methane in NY you will notice most of the highest concentrated methane are close to the border and even seems to be higher on the eastern side of what is Susquehanna County below, I feel it does show a pattern of the Geology of the region. Also living in Susquehanna County all my 34 years with no cable you spend a lot of time outside Hunting, Fishing, Hiking you tend to learn a lot about the Geology of your surroundings (THAT UNFORTUNATLEY NO REPORT CAN VERIFIY) I grew up with stories of people with what we call “Hard Water” up here. We were aware of Methane and Sulfur and iron in our water, My girlfriend in high school who lived on Rt 26 only used bottled water in 1996 and used to do laundry at our house because anything white would sometimes turn completely red with Iron. So as far as I am concerned as a life long resident I am not surprised to see much more in our water. I did a little research of some things in your paper I found the Definition of Hazard Quotient as follows. The ratio of the potential exposure to the substance and the level at which no adverse effects are expected. If the HQ is calculated to be equal to or less than 1, then no adverse health effects are expected as a result of exposure. If the HQ is greater than 1, then adverse health effects are possible. The HQ cannot be translated to a probability that adverse health effects will occur and it is unlikely to be proportional to risk. It is especially important to note that an HQ exceeding 1 does not necessarily mean that adverse effects will occur. I tried very hard to find a numbers scale for the HQ but could not, if you have this please provide for me. Looking at the report is see the major offenders are Manganese and Sodium. Manganese is found in measureable levels in 70% of water samples in the US. So we can circle right back to the fact that there is no reason that like all chemicals in the earth it can be found in higher concentrations in cretin places. And with no water well regs it could be a very easy for the water well to be the problem. As far as the Sodium about as much as in your Chinese takeout. Keeping to my point both the Susquehanna County “Martyrs” Were very new to this area and unfamiliar with its geology. I am also confused on why you want to do air testing for water issues? That a ride to Dimock or FF or anywhere is this county roll the windows down and take a deep breath, you will see our air is just fine. With that said I do believe the process of Frac’n is safe, To say it is 100% safe is as ignorant as saying it should be banned! What needs to be done (which is happing slowly) is watch and regulate flow back ponds and waste disposal, Because that is where any issues are happing, I am 100% for reuse of Frac water and not using deep injection well disposal, We need to work more toward correct process and drug testing and tec of the people doing the work. But until people quit using the issue for their personal agendas, and their 5 minutes of fame! A complete BAN would be suicide for America. I will leave you this thought If you don’t like Bee’s would you kill them all? Sure they may sting you from time to time, But we need them to pollinate our food.
            http://www.epa.gov/ttn/atw/natamain/gloss1.html
            http://www.epa.gov/safewater/ccl/pdfs/reg_determine1/support_cc1_magnese_dwreport.pdf
            Please excuse me if, it became hard to follow. But as much as you want me to be a “Paid Shill” I am at work and had to come back to it several times.

          • The_White_Rabbit

            Very true there is no regulations on individual water wells although drinking water limits do exist for comparison to what is a risk and the old question of “how clean is clean”. Many times water over risk based levels (EPA, DEP, or ATSDR) might not even be noticable. Your points are well taken. In fact, it seems that while agencies can suggest if there is a problem with water there is no law that states they cannot drink the water.

            Again consider that the point of my posts is doing the right thing and assessing the problem regardless of the industry. On background that is tough issue without predrilling data. On the assessment of contamination sites the only way to do this is to install specific monitoring wells. This serves two main functions:

            1. This determines the groundwater direction with accuracy. Typically in flat lying structural rocks the direction may likely mimic the topography, but the only way to know for sure and determine other factors that influence flow, is to install enough montoring wells to define upgradient and downgradient.

            2. The wells would define the horizontal and vertical extent of the problem. Again, the only way to find a practical treatment (if needed) is to define how large the plume is and treat what you can. This also helps define source areas so these can be removed or treated.

            I believe that higher than normal methane may exist along the area defined by Silverbrook Road that is adjacent to the Silver Spring State Park. This is a guess, but the vertical fracture that created the pathway for methane and salt was also source of the creek valley. Methane might be expected along this fracture (that parallels the creek/road) but not assumed in other areas.

            Overall, what can I say!!! Your post is informative and provides an opinion based on data. I think the name calling can desist (on my side also) with decent debates like this.

          • FrackDaddy

            Rabbit, As they say opinions are like ass holes, we all have one and most of them stink. I have no problem with a respectable debate or your opinion as long as it can be presented with factual info and respect. I will have to say this is the first for me in many years that did not end with me being a “Paid Shill”. Honestly even being Pro Gas, I am for stricter regulations and the more testing and data we can get the better. It is my home after all. Salt Springs could be an isolated aquifer feeding the spring, Or it could be one of the largest in the county state or world ( I would lean toward the latter since it have been going strong since records started in Susquehanna county) but do we really know? Also readings will go up and down with the level of the water table, You get higher concentrations of these things when the water in lower, it is simple math. Quarterly testing should be the standard, I would bet dollars to doughnuts you will get the highest reading in the summer and winter and lowest in the spring. With corrected water well regs, so we can compare apples to apples. You can really test a well done water well against one just given to the lowest bidder, With some baseline no one will ever really know right from wrong! Since we seem to be on good terms let me give you something else as food for thought. Imagine one day you turn on your TV to see towns in your county in a movie, You think wow little old us. But come to the quick realization that they are trashing one of the greatest places on earth (again my opinion it may stink). You turn on the news and go online and all you see, hear and read is what a polluted, dirty, disgusting place MY home is. Watching people flood in from other states acting like experts, when we know darn well they are not. Insulting the residents, Assuming that we are just some hicks who in no way could be smart enough to make or own decisions. Your first reaction is to defend your home and reputation. Now again I have no problems with people having their opinions, But unfortunately I see so many from the Anti side out doing the name calling, Twisting of the facts, Providing half truths and absolutely BULLING people in their home towns. These peoples lack of respect toward anyone or anything shines a bad light on them. I have personally been threatened by the likes of Vera Scroggins, And Bill Huston with trespass and legal action for pointing out how they are only telling the parts of the story that fits their agenda. Be called the ‘paid shill” when in fact they work for places like Food and water watch, Shale Shock and so on. When I have to post under a user name that I had to set up a dummy e-mail to get, to keep these people away from my home and family, I think they have gone too far! Sorry I got on a little rant there. Were you able to locate more on the HQ levels and what each one means? Also if you have some time look up the lazy brook trailer park, It is just miles from The Manning in Franklin forks and they had their well shut down in 1998 for almost exactly what the Manning’s are claiming. You find it interesting. Your olive branch is excepted on one condition, I can still call Josh Fox a Douche Bag! He has done more damage to Susquehanna County than Frac’n ever will.

          • The_White_Rabbit

            The olive branch is offered for two reasons. The first is that I have personally used the asshole/opinion line for many years but the stink part lends a whole new meaning that I will incorporate in my own verbal and written debates..

            The second is that I do respect any techncial opinions that counter my own philosophy. While not playing Rambo, learned from the USAF and PA National Guard that you should always respect the intelligence and motivation of your enemies regardless of their philosophy. Then you kill them but with respect. The point is that this severe miliary logic can be applied to debate sensible people that have difference in opinions. One should always respect others opinions even if totally opposite especially if based on relevant logic and personal research.

            If you are not with the industry, I have to admit you do quite a bit on educating yourself on the geology and gas extraction process. While we can disagree on this surprisingly long thread, you do bring up some good points. Again, remember the basic argument is has the investigation been done to consistent standards of the regulatory agencies even more than background versus man made problem. Have seen both sides of the coin and seen excellent people with the gas industry as well as the state and federal regulators. There would likely be no discussion if the politics would not interfere with the “business as usual” approach by industry and government. Let the data determine what is needed as this is an issue that is important to all of Pennsylvania.

          • FrackDaddy

            Rabbit, Well you can now say you learned something from a Pro Gasser (The Stink). I could not agree with you more! But this is more important than just Pennsylvania, Its important to America! I retract my “old Hippie” remarks. Thank you for providing a reasonable and respectful debate. I am sure we will bump into one another again.

          • The_White_Rabbit

            The old hippy is fine. I sort of like that description being from the Vietnam era. You certainly can’t be a former PADEP Deputy Secretary, you are making too much sense. This is an important national issue.

            (Don’t expect a chorus of kumbaya though!)

            Take care.

          • FrackDaddy

            I know your to last to do it your self……..ENJOY!

            http://vimeo.com/41848980

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