The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

January 4, 2014

Gas drilling bust


The Daily Item

— On Christmas day, of all days, The New York Times reported that natural gas wells in Wyoming are being abandoned at a rapid pace, with many companies declaring bankruptcy rather than paying the bonds they are legally obligated to pay. This leaves the state (and the Wyoming taxpayers) to pick up the pieces in plugging the abandoned wells and restoring the land.

All the promises of these drilling companies, it seems, are worthless when it no longer pays.

The gas market is global, so how long can it be before Pennsylvania sees the same problems? How will Governor Corbett deal with the collapse of his much-hyped boom?

Anyone with a bit of historical awareness knows this script: the lumber companies and the coal companies both despoiled the land, then disappeared when there was no more money to be made. The taxpayers were left holding the bag. Here we go again.

John Peeler,

Lewisburg