The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

April 29, 2013

Regulators: Marcellus shale drilling didn't foul wells


The Associated Press

MONTROSE — State environmental regulators looking into a high-profile case of methane contamination in northeastern Pennsylvania have concluded that gas drilling isn't to blame.

Anti-fracking celebrities including Yoko Ono and Susan Sarandon visited the Susquehanna County village of Franklin Forks in January as part of a tour of natural-gas drilling sites. The stars met with Matthew and Tammy Manning, who blame the high level of methane in their well water on a natural gas driller, WPX Energy.

But the state Department of Environmental Protection said today that its 16-month investigation shows that WPX isn't responsible. DEP says the methane in the residents' wells is naturally occurring shallow gas, not production gas from the Marcellus Shale formation.