Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Important Drilling Water Impact Study Updated

The Center for Rural Pennsylvania has updated the report it financed that examined the water impacts of gas drilling.  The report had previously found 7 water wells out of 233 where bromide levels had increased in before and after drilling measurements.  Penn State researchers now state that 1 water well had increased bromide levels.

You can read a prior blog posting on this study on October 24th and an article about the updated report by Laura Olson of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette at http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11330/1192761-503.stm#ixzz1f0kcpSoY.

The original report also found no increases in methane levels in before and after drilling.


  1. What the Center for Rural Pennsylvania, the authority that published the study in October, said, regarding the study is:

    "At this time, all research findings are being reviewed. Upon completion of the review, the researchers will develop an errata sheet to reflect all corrected data and analyses. Based on the errata, the Center for Rural Pennsylvania will issue a revised report, which should be available in the coming weeks."

    [source: pdf at : http://www.rural.palegislature.us/
    dated Nov. 22, 2011; accessed 11-29-11]

    Thus it is entirely premature to discuss conclusions that may or may not be forthcoming from the authors of the study.

    Competent science just does not jump to premature conclusions based on incomplete information. I hope the readers of this blog also do not make that mistake.

    Stanley R Scobie, Ph.D. , Binghamton, NY

  2. Fair enough. The original report is now under review and will be modified.

  3. Concerned ScientistNovember 29, 2011 at 2:01 PM

    Stanley said:

    "Competent science just does not jump to premature conclusions based on incomplete information."

    I agree with that.

    So I assume you put no faith at all in the Duke Study or the Howarth et al. study both of which were based on incomplete information.

    Howarth had an incomplete understanding of how gas wells are drilled and how piplelines work that led to a vast overestimation of how much methane leaks into the atmosphere. The Duke people had no baseline data to compare their methane concentrations with which made their study worthless.

    I hope that you commonly express the view to your friends in Binghamton that these papers should not be discussed because of these obvious shortcomings and the premature conclusions they drew on incomplete information.

  4. I was going to cite the Center for Rural Development report as well. If I read it correctly the final recommendation of precaution was that well setbacks from water sources should be 3,000 feet...seems to me they must know more than they are saying at this time?