The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection has updated their delivery mechanism of violation data, and it is now possible to search all inspections, including those that do not result in violations. To test it out, I downloaded all oil and gas inspection data from January 1, 2011 to January 16, 2012. Here is a summary of the results from that query:
While the vast majority of instances where no violations were issued were recorded in Column F, it seemed likely to me that no violations would have been issued for any category in rows D through I, so I aggregated those columns and divided by the total number of inspections.
According to the report instructions, the report was intended to include only those violations that resulted in a violation, but the final compliance report does allow for seeing all results. This is a very good thing, a it provides us with another way to evaluate the various operators within industry.
Before I present that data for the Marcellus Shale operators, I should point out a source of skew: When an inspection yields more than one violation, there are multiple entries for the actual inspection. For example, if one inspection yielded ten violations, this analysis would look at it as ten inspections, each of which yielded one violation. Clearly, that would distort the actual number of inspections with violations downward, resulting in more favorable scores for any operator with multiple violations on any one inspection. That in mind, let’s consider the following results to be preliminary. Still, it is useful in combination with the violations per well and violations per million cubic feet of production metrics to triangulate in on the operators’ culture of compliance.