Potection of Our environment

Re: Potection of Our environment

Postby chux4est » Fri Aug 29, 2008 9:51 am

edepots wrote:
thoran254 wrote:I totally agree with Chuck. Being in the construction industry the law requires companies to be environmentally sound. Why should we be paying for something that the law already requires. It is up to the city, county and state to oversee these requirements.

Listed below are a few things that are required by law:

wetland protection
erosion control
environmental impact studies
protected species act
water quality contraol

Did not the present administration declare gas and oil companies exempt from the Environmental Protection Act that would in every other circumstance be in place to protect us? I think environmental protection has become the landowners responsiblity as well as the gas companies. We need a good sound lease that will protect us and our neighbors.

My first post in this thread relies on a good lease contract. I just do not believe that the landowner needs to be financially penalized for requiring the lessee to protect the environment. I think thoran254 is pointing out that it is common in all business today to be required to protect the environment. The EPA may not have control over the drill site but the landowner does!!! So, I agree with you; we do need a good lease to protect us and our neighbors. I want the lease to have teeth in it!!! I do not want the lessee to manipulate the landowner into a defensive position on the environment! I hope that makes my position clear. Thanks for your input on this matter which is so important to everyone.

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Re: Potection of Our environment

Postby Rlasky » Mon Sep 01, 2008 7:49 am

You are all right theoretically, This should be a given. However, if you read the article about what is happening in Texas, I think you may get a general idea of what can happen without any control in the leases. This administration have exempt the oil and gas industry from the Environmental Protection Act.. I think this is a reality about how much they don’t care.
On posting this very general question, I thought it would be interesting to find out about how strong the computer members feel about environment. This done by the reaction to the question not really the answer.
It all started buzzing in my brain because one of the members who telephoned me told me that his father was a true environmentalist. However, when the gas company offered him a large sum of money, he was not interested in giving up anything. He accepted the large sum of money at the expense of his farm. Of course, not everyone is the same and he may have been an exception rather then the rule. It still was an interesting issue to me about how serious some people were about their environment especially when it became not a theoretical issue but something real
The question is so general that it is open to many interpretations. That is good, I think because people will voice their opinions on this forum as you did. I hope more people are prodded in becoming more active in the forum.
Remember I am just one of you with the same concerns. Reading comments and conversations on this forum is great not only for opinions but answers to many questions and things that really happened to people rather then things that someone told another that it happened to a cousin or friend or whatever. First hand stories are real.
Richard Lasky
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Re: Potection of Our environment

Postby snbfarmer » Tue Sep 02, 2008 6:48 am

I voted no for exactly the reason Chuck states. Well written and reasonable environmental restrictions, which are monitored once agreed to, should not require give up on the part of the landowner. They are a cost of doing business, much like OSHA regulations, and companies which don't agree to them won't lease and will have fewer acres to boast about to shareholders and see equity values suffer.
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Re: Potection of Our environment

Postby Bonafide » Tue Sep 02, 2008 4:28 pm

I guess i need a example, But i believe we should have as a core of the lease, Protection and testing of our water, No liability, and compensation for destorying trees and laying of gas pipelines,clean up of the land when done with the lease, having a termation of the lease, pugh clauses or wording that lets me use my land, to release later not held in production by the gas company. And to be paid a good signing bonus $$ with good royaltees :D This is what i want, There can be more but i'd be happy with this .. it doesn't have to be fancy. I saw a copy of the sanford/Deposit lease, the protections in there were pretty good. XTO set the bar at 2411.00 and years with royaltees i'm hoping the next coalition gets more. This lease needs to protect us i don't think the DEC will, it doesn't have to scare gas companies off either but its got to have some teeth to show we are serious and ready.
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Re: Potection of Our environment

Postby John Twitchell » Wed Sep 03, 2008 11:22 pm

Only when the last tree has died

And the last river has been poisones

And the last fish has been caught

Will we realize that we can't eat money

Cree proverb
John Twitchell
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Re: Potection of Our environment

Postby John Twitchell » Sun Nov 09, 2008 12:01 am

Hi friends,

You may recall I previously sent you a report, sent to me by a friend, about a gas well drilling accident near the hamlet of North Brookfield in Madison County. The original report is archived on the chenangogreens.org website under Gas drilling-water risks-North Brookfield wells disturbed. Since I was still curious for more details, I decided to take a field trip to North Brookfield today.

North Brookfield is a small hamlet in south-eastern Madison County, just east of NYS 12. It consists of a few dozen, mostly older, homes scattered along a narrow road that winds up a hill heading towards the considerably larger hamlet of Brookfield. The center of the community is dominated by a church, the firehouse and a bar. Since I didn't know anybody and the bar was the only place open I ended up spending some quality time at Buck's Inn.

Buck"s turned out be a clean friendly place and I had an interesting conversation with the owner and some of the customers. My original impression was that only a few homes/wells were involved, but the owner insisted that most of the homes in the area were affected. While my earlier source mentioned reports of bubbling in the small creek that runs thru town, the owner described it as "boiling." He also claimed that caps were blown off water wells. He witnessed one well spurting water that "looked like grey paint spurting 15 feet in the air."He stated that most people had "signed-off",receiving treatment systems and cash settlements in return. he quoted figures of 20-30 thousand, but, of course I have no way of verifying that. He and a few others refused to sign-off. His water was cloudy after the incident,but has since returned to normal and tests okay. Still, he says "who knows if it will in the future?"

The owner and others gave me directions to the well site, but said there was nothing to see, it was all"covered-over." I found the general location, based on the location of a cross-
road, and my odometer testified to the accuracy of their half-mile estimate, maybe a bit more. The distance and the number of people involved made a significant impression on me.
This was definitely not a "minor" incident. It would be interesting to know if people in other directions from the well-site were affected to an equal degree. I'd also like to see the specific site, but it was getting dark.

I am quite certain that I have located the well in question on the DEC well database.The API well number is31053238390000. The details conform with my previous info. It is called Button 1 and was permitted to Ardent Resources,Inc( a private gas drilling and production company, incorporated in New York State but based in Pittsburgh, PA.) The target formation was Black River(Trenton?) and the proposed depth was 3700 feet. The start/spud date is listed as2/9/07 and the completion and plugging/abandonment dates are both 2/13/07. The true vertical depth reached was only 406 feet. Appears, Ardent chose to cut their losses and run. Gives a whole new nuance to the term "cover-up".

I have no indication of chemical contamination in this incident, but questions remain. I understand that Ardent contracted for water testing. Who took the samples? What did they test for? My biggest question still remains "What if?"


John Twitchell
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Re: Potection of Our environment

Postby Derckert82 » Wed Nov 12, 2008 2:01 pm

John, this seems like a valid concern. Many people feel as you do. There are many "what ifs" that go into a venture like this one. Especially something so new to many of us. On the positive side, we have seen that overall, there is a very good track record by the oil and gas industry regarding environmental impact issues. The number of cases compared to the amount of work, drills, oil, gas, etc... is minimal at best. There are many people who would like you to believe otherwise and will keep reminding you of the few problems that have arisen to keep you wary of such things.

Negativity sells. What do you see the most in the news? Crashes, murders, fires, etc... That is what sells. That is what people talk about. Drilling has been going on for decades and only now people are discussing the problems that have happened, whether old or new.

Our steering committee in conjunction with the law firm, environmental engineers, and geologists will do everything they can to make sure that we only deal with those companies that come with a good reputation for being safe and compliant regarding oil and gas operations. I have full confidence that everything is being considered. A lot of work has gone into getting this done and done right. You can rest assured that you best interest is at the foremost of all work being done for the coalition. ;)
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Re: Potection of Our environment

Postby HarryH » Thu Nov 13, 2008 11:49 am

Last spring in May I talked to a resident of North Brookfield at reasonable length about the "incident". She lives on another street in town, about 1/2 mile on a hill well above where the well was drilled. She learned about it one morning when she smelled something, lit a match under her kitchen faucet, and got a nice steady flame. This went on for months while DEC sandbagged, the driller sandbagged, and the cows had to drink elsewhere. I have a copy of her letter to the DEC.

It was very unpleasant, and caused me debate whether to get involved, but I did join the coalition. I can confirm all the details you discovered, and suspect it opened a lot of eyes at DEC also.

Just make sure we get a good lease guarantee. The recent addition of larger and more experienced drilllers and companies will help a lot. The gas is going to get produced. Let's just do it right.

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Re: Potection of Our environment

Postby Garth » Thu Nov 13, 2008 4:12 pm

We have friends about two miles away (here in eastern Delaware County), who drilled a water well a few years ago. It was about 300' deep. When they hooked it up to the pump, it smelled funny. They held a lit match to the stream of water coming out the hose, and it spewed fire. Mind, there hasn't been any commercial gas drilling around here in 30 years, so it can't be blamed on anyone.

All of which is to say -- there is shallow gas all around here, as well as the deeper shale gas.

I bet the woman in Brookfield had an underground fracture open up when the gas company tried to retrieve that lost drillbit at 400'. (They used compressed air to try to dislodge it -- geniuses.) While some people in town got a snootful of murky water blown into their wells, that woman farther away tapped into local shallow gas.

I wonder if anyone in Brookfield had that problem drilling a water well in the years prior?

Our CNYLC lease does provide for water well testing before and after the gas drilling; and it provides for full remediation of any problems caused by drilling.
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Re: Potection of Our environment

Postby John Twitchell » Fri Nov 14, 2008 3:17 am

In response to recent comments: I previously owned a farm which had an abandoned water well said to contain natural gas. It was actually identified as a gas well on NYS DOT right of way maps. It was around 360 feet deep. I had the water tested and tho the gas had apparently dissipated, the lab found unhealthy levels of sodium. The previous owner who had the well drilled nearly burned the house down when he opened the kitchen tap and paused to light his pipe. My late father-in-law told me the story and he was in the fire depatment at the time and lived about aquarter of a mile up the road. The rafters in the attic over the kitchen are still charred.These are not uncommon in the region. A similar case was reported in an article in the Press&Sun-bulletin over the summer months. I'm sure you can find it in their archives. So, what's that got to do with anything?

We are told by geologists tha t the Marcellus is the the source of radon gas that infiltrates residents' homes. Seems likely to me that the Marcellus and other deep deposits might also be the source of the natural gas that occasionally contaminates water wells. Radon has a half-life of only 8 hours, so it must be percolating upward at a fairly rapid rate. How will hydraulic fracturing affect these issues? I don't have the answers, but I think it's a question worth asking,and
answering. Add the toxic chemicals known to be used in the drilling and fracing processes and the question becomes even more compelling. Fracing(or fragging, asI like to call it) hardly seems to be a precision process. You know it's going to do a lot of damage, but the true extent of that damage would seem to be rather unpredictable.

Pre-testing of water seems like a good idea on the face of it, but what do you test for If the companies are exempted from disclosure of the chemicals they're using? DEC says says they will insist on disclosure but that remains to be seen. Who does the testing? The companies? Would you hire a fox to guard the hen house? I think the activities of the land men testify to the ethics of the industry. If you think I'm exaggerating these issues, than you need to read(or re-read)
the information on ogap.org and tedx.org.

I'm not saying drill or don't drill. I am saying wait. There are many questions to be answered and issues to be resolved. Take your time. think it over. The gas isn't going anywhere.
John Twitchell
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