Posts Tagged ‘Mulberry Street’

Gas drilling company wants to draw 20 million gallons a day from river

Gas-drilling firm increased original request tenfold.

After it received approval to withdraw about 2 million gallons of water daily from the Susquehanna River, Chesapeake Energy Corp. is trying to increase that allowance roughly tenfold.

The Susquehanna River Basin Commission approved the original allowance in September, but Chesapeake applied earlier this week for a modification of the approval to allow withdrawing 20 million gallons each day.

The approval is only for natural-gas drilling in eight counties in New York and 15 counties in Pennsylvania, including Luzerne.

Chesapeake did not immediately return a request for comment.

Whether the request is approved remains to be seen.

“They can request however much, but that doesn’t mean that’s what the commissioners would ultimately approve,” SRBC spokeswoman Susan Obleski said. “We have gotten a few others (requests for withdrawal increases) … but certainly no increase like this.”

The increase seems to be to allow multiple well drillings each day, she said. New techniques, called hydrofracturing, have made it economical to attempt extracting gas from Marcellus shale deposits deep underground, but the drilling is heavily water intensive, requiring millions of gallons for each “fracing” process.

She noted the SRBC is considering changing its rules so that each well pad would require a withdrawal permit instead of one for the company’s entire leased area.

The commission is scheduled to vote on the issue in December. The public can comment on the increase request or rule changes by e-mailing the commission or by attending public meetings.

If you go

The Susquehanna River Basin Commission is holding a public meeting at 7 p.m. on Oct. 21 at Lycoming College’s Academic Center’s Lecture Hall, Room D001, on Mulberry Street in Williamsport. Notice of attendance or submission of testimony should be sent to Richard Cairo at

Copyright: Times Leader