Sunday, May 29, 2011

WVIA State of PA - John H. Quigley, Jordan Yeager, Jeff Zimmerman, Will NEPA Get It Right This Time?

WVIA finally presents the truth on gas drilling!

The Williamsport Sun-Gazzette: "A Rigged Game" May 29, 2011

Yes... it's a 'rigged' game.

The gas industry, and those who will profit from it, endlessly speak of economic opportunity, local jobs, energy independence, and tax revenue for the townships' but never mention the long term, environmental, and social economic affects this will have on our rural communities. They call this industrialization a game changer. That much I agree with, but they never address exactly how the game will change, or how they will accomplish their goals.

The gas industry came to Pennsylvania, waved the flag of patriotism, said we'd become wealthy, told us this would lead to energy independence, local jobs, and affordable energy, because if they told us the truth, most people would have sent the landman packing and not signed a lease. The same reason they lied about horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing being "100 percent safe".

The real truth is, for this game to really be profitable for them, the oil and gas industry need to turn rural U.S. into third-world style gas and oil fields. They've been doing this overseas for decades using the same tactics they're using here. They try to discredit and villify any well-informed opposition, ghost-write favorable legislation, retain the most powerful law firms in the state so they can't represent any citizens or communities that will be negatively impacted by their activities, and eventually drive people off their land by making it unlivable by depleting and/or contaminating it's natural resources.
Once they do that, the local jobs disappear, and the industries that were always our cherished mainstays in Pennsylvania like agriculture, tourism, recreation, forestry, new home building, small family businesses, are now out of their way and a thing of the past.

We need to slow down and come to our senses before it's too late.  - John Trallo

From a Local Perspective: Gas industry under siege: Momentum shifting to gas-driller critics

The Sunday Daily Review May 29, 2011

Don't believe, or let anyone tell you, we're not making a difference, or that there's nothing we can do. The gas industry is vulnerable. They're feeling threatened, and political cover is falling away.
We need to stand together and keep the pressure on!

See Shift Happens: (which is the source for the following):

A gas industry exec finally admitted their worst fear -- that the loss of public confidence could do to shale gas extraction what it did to the nuclear industry 30 years ago, "and billions of dollars that had been invested were abandoned."

John Hanger, former head of PA DEP, tells gas industry, "There has to be truth behind the [gas industry] brand. It is under siege to say the very least."

Shift happens, and the energy industry knows its traditional game has changed but struggles to figure out what is going on. Industry's traditional power on this issue has shifted, driven by technology and the worldwide web. It isn't just the gas industry that is global; and the traditional industry behavior model is in decay.

Three indicators characterize this shift; and, in response, the industry is failing for three reasons:
1. The energy industry speaks in absolutes that, until recently, were not seriously challenged.
2. The industry characterizes citizen opposition as left-wing environmental whacko and even extremists. (It ignores its trampling of property rights which is fundamentally a conservative principle.)
3. The industry demonstrates it is not capable of living up to its own published principles such as environmental protection, accountability and transparency. (After seven months, the Marcellus Shale Coalition still cannot explain what its second guiding principle means it will do at the well site.)
Even Texas is no longer a sanctuary for the energy industry. The Dallas Morning News recently editorialized:

"Local governments across North Texas are sounding alarms about the possibility of increased air pollution, groundwater contamination, noise and declining property values coinciding with drilling companies' push into urban areas.

"These concerns are not overblown. ... But the industry's tendency has too often been to deny, deflect and use judicial bullying to get its way.

"Such tactics aren't exactly winning friends. ..."

To return to the comparison with the nuclear industry, the shale gas fracking industry is radioactive in terms of public trust. And it achieved this distinction the old fashioned way - it "earned" it.

Editor's note: Mr. Trallo's avocation includes being a natural gas industry critic who has been active in the region advocating his views. He also is a professional guitarist, singer, songwriter, music teacher and luthier. He lives in Sonestown in Sullivan County.

Coal set the stage for natural-gas free-for-all

Pa.'s lax approach to the environment repeats itself.

Nature doesn't tolerate a void. When you remove any substance in great quantities ie: coal, rock, water, mineral, natural gas, etc., you create a void. Nature, will ultimately try to fill that void. The question is, with what, and when?

Case in point... the huge number and frequency of earthquakes in Arkansas. *Question: What do Arkansas and Pennsylvania have in common that it doesn't with Texas, Louisiana, and Wyoming? Answer: MOUNTAINS!

Are we so impressed by ourselves because we can do this, that we're not going to stop and think if we should?

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Business Owners, Residents Say: "Picnics, NOT Pipelines"

Thursday, May 26, 2011 11 a.m. to noon (Rain or shine)

Business Owners, Residents Say: "Picnics, NOT Pipelines"
Kick off Endless Mountain tourist season with plea to preserve region’s way of life and have lunch on us!
LAPORTE, PA – Business owners and year-round and seasonal residents will kick off the summer tourist season in Pennsylvania’s Endless Mountains with a picnic -- and a plea to local, state, and federal officials to preserve the region’s way of life in the face of a proposed gas pipeline project.
For generations, visitors have flocked to the Endless Mountains in Northeast Pennsylvania to enjoy the region’s river gateways, rolling hills, family farms, river towns, historic districts and quaint rural villages -- helping to feed the state’s $26-billion-a-year tourism industry.
But the Central New York Oil and Gas Company wants to install an industrial gas pipeline that would slice through the region, tear up almost 600 acres of land in Bradford, Sullivan, and Lycoming counties, and replace wooded mountains and pastoral landscapes with 39 miles of pipeline, additional miles of lateral gathering lines, access roads, massive compressor units, filter separators, gas coolers and other industrial machinery. Click here (PDF) for a map of the proposed pipeline route.
Business owners and year-round and seasonal residents fear that if the pipeline project goes through as planned, it could mean the end of summer as they’ve known it in the Endless Mountains.
WHAT: Business owners, year-round and seasonal residents kick off summer tourist season in Pennsylvania’s Endless Mountains with a picnic and a plea to preserve the region’s way of life in the face of a proposed gas pipeline project.
WHEN: Thursday, May 26, 2011 11 a.m. to noon (Rain or shine)
Michael Stasiunas, Owner, Forksville General Store and Restaurant
Charles and Barbara Gerlach, Owners, Blueberry Fields Organic Farm and Bed & Breakfast
Dr. Arno Vosk, Emergency Room Doctor, Williamsport Hospital and Medical Center
Members of Damascus Citizens for Sustainability, Coalition for Responsible Growth & Resource Conservation, Responsible Drilling Alliance, Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition, Sierra Club (Pennsylvania Chapter)
WHERE: Laporte Park, Laporte, PA. Main Street between Court and Muncy streets.
John Trallo at (570) 482-3503 or
Kathleen Sutcliffe at (202) 667-4500, (202) 384-7157 or Washington, D.C.
*Earthjustice is a non-profit public interest law firm dedicated to protecting the magnificent places, natural resources, and wildlife of this earth and to defending the right of all people to a healthy environment. We bring about far-reaching change by enforcing and strengthening environmental laws on behalf of hundreds of organizations and communities.... "Because the Earth needs a good lawyer!"
A map showing the proposed pipeline route is available here:

Please pass the word to others about this event, and encourage them to attend.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Bradford County residents/farmers - Watch, listen, and learn!

These are two of the most well informed, well documented, and fearless woman I've ever met. They know what they're talking about. Watch, listen, and learn.

Carol French and Carolyn Knapp - Bradford County residents/farmers

Monday, May 23, 2011

Tuesday June 7 people from across the state will come to Harrisburg PA

On Tuesday June 7 people from across the state will come to Harrisburg PA to let their representatives know that our leaders need to protect our water, air and land from unsafe, unregulated gas drilling practices in the Marcellus Shale.
I have set up several buses on our website with a shopping cart. Please Share this email.

To purchase a seat online: or call 1-800-200-2229 to place an order over the telephone by credit card MC/VISA. Free and Discounted seats are available too.

There will be speakers at the rally on the capitol steps. We have the steps from 10am -2pm. The main event will be held at 12-1pm. Josh Fox, director of the Academy Awards nominated documentary Gasland, will be there! Josh and others will shine a light on this issue. I feel such a sense of community and joy each time I reach out and attend events to preserve our magnificent state. I believe you will too.

Below are links to articles, videos and websites that will educate you and your friends about WHY so many people are concerned, outraged and determined to take action in their home towns and in Harrisburg. If you think it is enough that some of us are involved – be aware – the only way we can be certain to protect our state from irreversible damage is for each and every one to take action. THE TIME FOR ACTION IS NOW!

Please call me, and share my contact information with others. I am more than willing to do my part to educate and inform my fellow Pennsylvanians about what the oil and gas industry has in store for us. Pennsylvania has experienced some of the most tragic outcomes of energy exploration in the past. Please read up on the town of Centralia, PA to see an example of a ghost town due to the coal industry. At a minimum we should learn from our experience – industry comes in, makes money and leaves behind a mess for tax payers!

The gas industry projects tens of thousands of wells in PA, each producing about 1 million gallons of toxic wastewater per frack, and each well can be fracked multiple times. The sheer magnitude of this exploration is the tipping point which makes it imperative that we have the proper policy in place BEFORE more damage is done. In the first several years of drilling in PA there have been over 1000 serious violations. Some of these violations can be seen on the PA Department of Environmental Protection website. I have included the link to violations below. But, the newest tragedies may not be posted until much later, such as the Bradford County Blowout in April 2011.

Links to the sponsors of our Rally and Lobby Day on June7…

Important action step….when you join us in Harrisburg on June 7 you can meet with your legislators in a small group.

Meetings range from 9am-12pm and 1pm-4pm. Most visits last approximately 15 minutes. Please sign-up ASAP for lobby visits. Lobby visit training will be provided.

Schedule on-line with the following organizations.

PennEnvironment June 7 Lobby sign-up

PA Campaign for Clean Water June 7 Lobby sign-up
PA Campaign for Clean Water


Videos from experts about the current gas drilling practices…
Dr. Anthony R. Ingraffea

DR. Theo Colborn

The Facts on Fracking by Dr. Anthony R. Ingraffea Dec 16, 2010

Dr. Conrad Volz, Director of the University of Pittsburgh Center for Healthy Environments and Communities March 15, 2011. Speaking at Misericordia University

Great Websites for organizations that have been deeply involved in gas drilling issues…

Articles that have been recently published…

New York Times – “Drilling Down in Pennsylvania” Four Articles by Ian Urbina…
1. Regulation Lax Gas Wells’ tainted Water Hits Rivers

2. Wastewater Recycling No Cure-All in gas Process

3. Pressure Limits Efforts to Police Drilling for Gas

4. E.P.A. Steps Up Scrutiny of Pollution in Pennsylvania Rivers

Take a look below at some of the violations in PA. This is from the PA Dept of Environmental Protection website…

Oil & Gas
Inspections - Violations - Enforcements
Updated 4/06/2011
· 2011 (January thru March)
· 2009
· 2008

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Energy Independence Is Nothing But A Scam

Cheniere Surges After U.S. Expands Its LNG Export Approval
Cheniere Energy Inc. (LNG), the Blackstone Group LP-backed owner of a U.S. liquefied natural-gas terminal, surged 31 percent after it won government approval to export the fuel to more countries.
Cheniere, based in Houston, rose $2.35 to $10.04 at 4:15 p.m. in New York Stock Exchange composite trading. The shares touched a 52-week high of $11.11, the biggest intraday gain since November 2008. Before today, the shares had gained 39 percent this year.
The Energy Department will allow Cheniere’s Sabine Pass terminal in Louisiana to export as much as 803 billion cubic feet a year of U.S. gas, according to the company’s statement today. Cheniere still needs Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approval to build a $6.4 billion facility at the site that can liquefy gas for export by tankers.
Today’s decision expands on a September 2010 ruling that permitted Cheniere to ship gas to 15 countries with Free Trade Agreements, according to a statement from the Energy Department in Washington. The company, which lost money for 13 consecutive years and earlier this month warned it may have to sell assets and restructure debt to avoid running out of cash, has yet to say how it intends to finance the project.

‘Breakthrough’ Plan

“Cheniere Energy’s plan to transform its existing terminal into a facility that can both import and export liquefied natural gas is a precedent-setting breakthrough that will bring substantial economic benefits to southwest Louisiana,” Senator Mary Landrieu, a Louisiana Democrat, said in a statement distributed by the Energy Department.
A North American gas glut fed by new wells in previously impenetrable geologic formations has slashed prices for U.S. supplies to less than one-third the prices paid by utilities and chemical makers in nations such as Japan, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Cheniere and other U.S. companies such as Apache Corp. (APA) see an opportunity to profit from that arbitrage.
Gas can be super-cooled to liquid form so it can be transported on tankers for distribution to markets too distant to be connected to gas fields via pipelines. Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM), Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSA), Chevron Corp. (CVX) and other international energy companies are spending tens of billions of dollars on liquefaction plants to ship gas from Australia, Papua New Guinea and other sources to markets in Asia and Europe.

Japanese Premium

Japanese power companies and chemical producers were paying $14.15 per million British thermal units for Qatari LNG in March, the last month for which figures were available from Japan’s Customs Bureau. Prices at the U.S. benchmark hub in Erath, Louisiana, averaged $4.51 that same month.
Gas liquefied and exported from the Sabine Pass facility probably will originate in onshore formations in Texas, Louisiana, Oklahoma and Arkansas, Cheniere said in its application with the Energy Department.
Cheniere, whose stock traded above $44 in 2006, is among companies that built U.S. gas-import terminals during the past decade that then languished as new drilling techniques unlocked domestic supplies, pushing gas prices too low to justify costlier imports.
Cheniere’s cash and near-cash equivalents fell by $50 million during the first three months of this year, ending the quarter at $24.5 million, the Houston-based company said on May 6. Cheniere has a $298 million loan payment due in May 2012, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
Cheniere owns the Sabine Pass terminal through its 91 percent stake in Cheniere Energy Partners LP (CQP), according to a May 6 filing.

Friday, May 20, 2011

The Marcellus Shale and Agriculture Forum in Lancaster, PA (videos)

Well worth watching!

Guest Speakers:
-State Representative Eugene DePasquale
-Petroleum Engineer/Civil Engineer: Kathy Martin
-Affected PA Landowners: Ron Gulla & Terry Greenwood

Thursday, May 19, 2011

This is what is coming to Sullivan County, PA

This lasted for nine days straight. It just 'vents methane' without the flaring for seven days, then 'flares' again for another nine days.

This is what is coming to Sullivan County, PA with the blessing, and encouragement of our county commissioners, the SulCo Energy Task Force, State Rep Tina Pickett, and Senator Gene Yaw.

This is from a five-well pad. Just imagine what this will look like, sound like, and smell like in Sullivan County, in your back yard, or your neighbors back yard, when there are 1500+/- well pads supporting 5500+/- gas wells, and approximately 100 compressor stations.

Remember that in the general election.

I suggest you all: call, visit, email, or write them and share with them your thoughts, concerns, and ask them where their loyalty lies. With the people who elected them, or the gas industry. 

Sullivan County Commissioners:
Darla Bortz <>
(running for re-election, leased landowner, lobbying for compressor stations in Sullivan County, and accepting campaign 'funding' from the gas industry)

Betty Reibson <>
(not running for re-election, but is now Director of Industry Relations, and is hoping for a well on her property)

Beb Getz <>
(running for re-election, leased landowner)
*All three of the mentioned commissioners signed a letter, sent to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), and asked that they "look beyond the localized concerns of some citizens, and the interest of Sullivan County" and urged them to approve the MARC-1 Pipeline Project which will severely impact 48 private properties in it's path, and become the enabler for the massive industrialization of Sullivan County, loss of tourism, loss of property value, loss of property, and will put public health and safety at high risk.

Senator Gene Yaw:
(cares ONLY about the state budget, and whose election was heavily 'funded' by the gas industry)

State Reprsentative Tina Pickett:
(does not even own property in PA, lives in a rental community, and whose election campaign was heavily 'funded' by the gas industry)

Sullivan County Energy Task Force Chairman:
John Silla <>
(appointed by the Sul Co Commissioners, gas lease holder, privately heavily invested in pipeline stock, and head of the Sullivan County Chamber of Commerce)

The New Protect Eagles Mere Alliance Web site is now LIVE!!!!

PEMA is pleased to announce the launch of our website:

This site has been a long time in the making, and it is our hope that it will become a "go to" resource for you to get current information on gas drilling, upcoming events, action alerts, community news, to give online, and much more. 

We will continue to provide e-mail updates when something of interest is posted to the site - so if you have a friend or family member who is not yet on our e-mail list, please refer him/her to the website, where one may sign-up to receive updates.
Please bear with us as we work through any kinks during these first few weeks - and feel free to share any comments you have that might improve the site. As with any new website, PEMA's will be a work in progress.
Once again, thank you for your support as we work together to protect Eagles Mere and the surrounding communities.
The Protect Eagles Mere Alliance Board
Jim Ash
Shannon Baker
Nancy Liebert
Holly Schadler
Mary Ann Stanton
Jeff Westphal

Sullivan County Energy Task Force Meeting

Friday, May 27 · 9:00am - 11:00pm

 Sullivan County Court House, Laporte, PA

I suggest that everyone who can attend, come and express your legitimate concerns about the impact massive gas drilling will have on the environment, ask the hard questions and demand real answers, not rhetoric.

DEP Director of Oil & Gas, Scott Perry will be speaking and answering questions on the environmental impact of gas drilling. This meeting is open to the public.

video excerpts from A "non-meeting" in Hillsgrove, PA

Chesapeake wants to establish a five acre water withdrawal point and water impoundment facility in the middle of Hillsgrove. The owner of the property signed a surface agreement, but never agreed to this.
Our Sullivan County Commissioners, Darla Bortz and Betty Reibson tried to exclude non-Hillsgrove Twp residents from the meeting saying that this did not concern anyone outside of Hillsgrove. They then denied recieving any notification, but according to the state, the county must receive notice of any permits for anything within the county.
I, and many other non-Hillsgrove residents were invited by the people of Hillsgrove to support their position, because Darla told them they were not allowed to publicize the meeting in the Sully because she didn't want 'outsiders' getting involved. The Loyalsock runs for 63.5 miles, and is one of the centerpieces of Sullivan and Lycoming Counties, and the economic health of tourism depends largely on the Loyalsock.
See for yourself how they tried to discourage any opposition, or township ordinances that may interfere with Chesapeake's plans.
I'll apologize in advance for my display of anger, but I could not tolerate their cockiness and disregard for the people they were elected to represent.
You'll see what I mean...

This is NOT a meeting. How Orwellian is that?

The un-meeting in Hillsgrove, PA 5-9-11

The un-meeting comes to an insane end