Utica Shale

September 11, 2013

Drillers in Ohio increasingly shifting to southern counties

Source: Akron Beacon Journal (OH), September 4, 2013
Posted on: http://envfpn.advisen.com

Carroll County is the reigning Utica shale capital of Ohio.

With 319 wells permitted, Carroll represents nearly 38 percent of the 858 wells the Ohio Department of Natural Resources has approved since late 2010.

Chesapeake Energy, the No. 1 driller in Ohio, staked out early and extensive claims in Carroll and surrounding counties: Columbiana, Portage and Stark. Today the Oklahoma-based energy giant, the No. 2 producer of natural gas in the United States, has a total of 503 permits in eastern Ohio — nearly 59 percent of the statewide total.

Interest from other drillers is shifting, however, and extending to the south in a big way — into Harrison, Belmont, Monroe, Guernsey and Noble counties. Those five counties have become the drilling hot spot in eastern Ohio.

Of Ohio’s 2013 Utica shale permits, more than 50 percent have been issued to energy companies interested in those counties, and that region is not Chesapeake’s stronghold, according to a Beacon Journal review of state data.

Harrison County leads the way with 124 permits since 2010, followed by Noble County with 62, according to information from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources’ Division of Oil & Gas Resources Management.

Ohio has issued 45 permits in Belmont County, 33 in Monroe County and 50 in Guernsey County.

Washington County — even farther south — has an additional seven permits, all this year.…

August 7, 2013

Gas leaks from shale wells rare

Source: The Columbus Dispatch, August 5, 2013
Posted on: http://envfpn.advisen.com

Minutes after Debby Kline flicked a lighter near a bathroom sink in her Portage County house in northeastern Ohio, she called the fire department.

A sink-to-ceiling flare erupted when she tried to light a candle on Dec. 21, she told a TV news show. State oil and gas regulators are still investigating what caused natural gas to bubble out of the faucet.

Kline’s Nelson Township house is within a half-mile of two Utica shale wells that state records show were drilled and fracked in October and November.

Videos of burning water in Ohio and Pennsylvania households have helped bring attention to shale drilling and fracking, but such incidents are rare. Most complaints associated with oil and gas drilling are about drinking-water wells that run dry or produce water that’s discolored, smelly or clogged with sediment.

But in some cases, natural gas from poorly cased and cemented wells can seep into drinking-water wells, making faucets spit fizzy water that some homeowners can ignite.

“We encourage people not to do that, because there is an explosive risk,” said Kevin Sunday, a spokesman for the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.

Ohio Department of Natural Resources officials said they could not discuss Kline’s case while it is being investigated. Kline also declined to comment.

Oil- and gas-industry advocates say shallow pockets of natural gas can leak into groundwater. They say drilling gets blamed for something that has been going on, unnoticed, for years.…