Monday, September 19, 2011

65 Marcellus Wells Cited For Casing & Cementing Violations

Through August 2011, 65 Marcellus wells were cited for casing and cementing violations, according to Laura Legere of the Scranton Times-Tribune in a story yesterday.  See

Legere points out that casing and cementing problems can lead to gas migrating and contamination of water wells. She reports that there have been three dozen cases of gas migrating from gas wells to contaminate people's water wells in Northeast Pennsylvania. 

Legere asserts that the number of casing and cementing violations through August 2011 were 1 greater than the number in 2010.  The statistic would indicate that the industry as a whole has much more work to do to achieve excellence in this critical area.  It also underlines the need for strong oversight of gas drilling and that must include insuring sufficient staffing.

Secretary Krancer is quoted in the article as saying, "One case of methane migration or well contamination is one case too many." The goal should indeed be to eliminate all methane migration cases.  To do so, casing and cementing must be done excellently by all companies.

1 comment:

  1. This paragraph was a breath of fresh air:

    Casing and cementing violations do not necessarily indicate that gas has migrated or will migrate into drinking water supplies, and methane is present in many water wells in Pennsylvania from natural pathways unrelated to gas drilling. But in the three dozen instances when methane has migrated into water supplies from gas wells in Northeast Pennsylvania, cement flaws have been identified by state regulators as a primary pathway for the gas.

    So nice to see a reporter get things in perspective. I'd like to know if that was 36 gas wells or 36 water wells. Dimock had only 3 or 4 gas wells that had problems but they caused problems in 19 or 20 water wells (you would know these exact numbers better John). So would the Dimock wells make up 19 or 20 of the 36 or only 3 or 4 of the 36?