Forest fragmentation in PA

Forest Fragmentation and O&G Development in PA’s Susquehanna Basin

In this forest fragmentation analysis, FracTracker looked at existing vegetation height in the northern portion of Pennsylvania’s Susquehanna River Basin. The vegetation height data is available from LANDFIRE, a resource used by multiple federal agencies to assess wildfire potential by categorizing the vegetation growth in 30 by 30 meter pixels into different categories. In the […]

For the Environmental Justice Listening Tour

PA DEP Environmental Justice Listening Tour

A Guide to Current EJ Rules and Potential Changes by Kirk Jalbert, Manager of Community-Based Research & Engagement, FracTracker Alliance and Veronica Coptis, Executive Director, Center for Coalfield Justice The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) will be hosting a nine-stop “listening tour” to hear residents’ perspectives on environmental justice (EJ). These sessions begin in […]

Mariner East Technical Difficulties map

Remaining Questions on Mariner East Technical Deficiencies

In the summer of 2015, Sunoco Logistics submitted applications to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to build its massive Mariner East 2 pipeline. The ME 2 pipeline would have the capacity to transport 275,000 barrels a day of propane, ethane, butane, and other hydrocarbons from the shale fields of Western Pennsylvania to the […]

Ethane Cracker risks

A Formula for Disaster: Calculating Risk at the Ethane Cracker

by Leann Leiter, Environmental Health Fellow map & analysis by Kirk Jalbert, Manager of Community-Based Research & Engagement in partnership with the Environmental Integrity Project On January 18, 2016, Potter Township Supervisors approved conditional use permits for Shell Chemical Appalachia’s proposed ethane cracker facility in Beaver County, PA. A type of petrochemical facility, an ethane cracker […]

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Revolving Doors & the PA Natural Gas Industry

By Susan Volz, FracTracker Alliance Intern The result of this year’s presidential election has sent shock waves through all levels of government. Many are now wondering what the next four years will look like in terms of funding and policy decisions. Just a few days after the inauguration, the next administration’s cabinet choices have many worried. […]

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Hypothetical Impacts of Unconventional Drilling In Allegheny County

With tens of thousands of wells scattered across the countryside, Southwestern Pennsylvania is no stranger to oil and gas development. New, industrial scale extraction methods are already well entrenched, with over 3,600 of these unconventional wells drilled so far in that part of the state, mostly from the well known Marcellus Shale formation. Southwestern Pennsylvania […]

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“Taking” Wildlife in PA, OH, WV

By Karen Edelstein, Eastern Program Coordinator, FracTracker Alliance   In an apparent move to step around compliance with comprehensive regulations outlined in the Endangered Species Act (ESA), a coalition of nine oil and gas corporations has filed a draft plan entitled the Oil & Gas Coalition Multi-State Habitat Conservation Plan (O&G HCP). The proposed plan, […]

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Mariner East 2: At-Risk Schools and Populations

by Kirk Jalbert, Manager of Community-Based Research & Engagement with technical assistance from Seth Kovnant   In September, the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) rejected a number of permits for wetland crossings and sedimentation control that were required for Sunoco Pipeline’s proposed “Mariner East 2” pipeline. According to Sunoco, the proposed Mariner East 2 […]

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Conventional, Non-Vertical Wells in PA

Like most states, the data from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection do not explicitly tell you which wells have been hydraulically fractured. They do, however, designate some wells as unconventional, a definition based largely on the depth of the target formation: An unconventional gas well is a well that is drilled into an Unconventional […]