Tag Archives: Williamsport Sun-Gazette
Posted in Communities | Current Events | Marcellus Shale | Natural Gas | Politics | Transportation | Water/Wastewater
Our region will always try to define the Marcellus experience. Some think it’s good; some see an irreversible threat; some think of it as both. What we need is a commitment to make Marcellus development better and safer. While not everyone may be on board, there is a clear swing towards improving operations and technology to make development better and safer. I thought I would share two recent items.
Last week, I was involved in a conversation with some folks that weren’t convinced any improvements or progress are being made to reduce the impact of Marcellus Shale development. I thought I would share how this conversation went.
“There are still problems with gas companies destroying local roads. How are taxpayers going to handle that?”
No doubt that development activity is hammering local roads. There are lots of heavy trucks traveling on roads that were never built to handle the use. But there is a change underway to make this work better. This summer PennDOT issued guidelines primarily for the gas industry, but also for other heavy haulers. These guidelines included mandatory roadway maintenance and repair strategies. These strategies have to be submitted to PennDOT within 24 hours of a report of critical road condition. The strategies outline the contractor to be used, what materials will be used to repair to road, if the material will be replaced prior to June 30 following the winter, and so on. All actions relating to the strategies will be paid for by the gas companies. An article by John Beauge in the September edition of Northeast Pennsylvania Business Journal describes how Chesapeake Energy has spent $15 million since spring repairing roads in Lycoming, Sullivan, Bradford, and Tioga counties and their plan is to spend another $15 million before the end of 2010. The inconvenience of a damaged road isn’t avoided; but the cost is being passed from the tax payer to the gas company. A good and necessary step I think.No comments yet | Permalink | Tags: Chesapeake Energy, John Beauge, Marcellus Shale, Northeast PA Business Journal, PennDOT, SRBC, Susquehanna River Basin Commission, Williamsport Sun-Gazette