You really need this sort of birds eye view to fully realize the widespread oil and gas development that’s taken place in western Pennsylvania since 2004, when the first Marcellus Shale gas well was drilled in Westland, Mount Pleasant Township, Pennsylvania, followed by more early development around Hickory, Washington County, PA.
TRI-STATE AREA Widespread shale gas development has also taken place upwind from western Pennsylvania communities, in the neighboring states of Ohio and West Virginia, that feature a combination of Utica Shale and Marcellus Shale gas production. Some of the largest cryogenic gas plants have been built in places like Cadiz, Ohio and Majorsville, WV, while the hub (seen below) for most of this shale gas development is located in Houston, PA at the beginning of the Mariner East pipeline, which runs to the east coast for exports.
17 YEARS LATER As seen in the April 2021 aerial video below, an amazing amount of land has already been consumed by pipelines, compressor stations, well pads and gas processing plants, not to mention how many trees in “Penn’s Woods” have been obliterated. Most local residents are unaware of this development since much of it is out of sight.
ROLLING HILLS AND VALLEYS Well pads in the rolling hills and mountains of western Pennsylvania consume a considerable amount of acreage. Some forecasts indicate there will be another 40,000 to 90,000 unconventional gas wells drilled and fracked before it’s all said and done. Air pollution is trapped in the valleys.
TIGHT ROCK Marcellus Shale rock is extremely stingy with it’s methane gas, as well as being a finite fossil fuel, yet far too many Pennsylvania politicians, mostly Republicans, are hooked on the fracked gas song and dance. Meantime, multiple friends of ours have not only moved away to escape shale gas production, some have left the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania for other states.
SLICED & DICED While you won’t notice all the pipeline cuts running through farm fields in this video, the forest fragmentation you do see is quite telling, since every well has to have a gathering pipeline, not to mention all the larger pipelines that have been excavated to move gas out of Pennsylvania. Pipeline cuts will never grow trees again.
MARCELLUS AIR – APRIL 2021 This flight, 12 months ago, takes you over several western Pennsylvania counties, where Marcellus Shale development continues. The largest area of concentrated petrochemical development you will see is just southwest of Pittsburgh International Airport, in northern Washington County, PA.
Some of the locations and facilities seen in the video include: The Pennsylvania Turnpike, Marcellus Shale well pads, compressor stations, gas pipelines, unconventional drill rig, cryogenic gas plants, Smith Township, Washington County, Allegheny County, Revolution Gas Plant, Harmon Creek Gas Plant, Smith Compressor Station, Three Brothers Compressor Station, Southern Beltway PA-579, McDonald Pa, Hickory Pa, Route 18 corridor, Route 40 National Road, Route 519 and the Eighty-Four Pa area.