Saturday, October 6, 2012

Wetterling Well Under Way in Owego, NY

The other day a resident in Owego was out for her morning walk. She knew a gas well was planned for the area - but was surprised to see the top of a drilling rig poking above the treetops.

Apparently, drilling for the Wetterling Well, just off McHenry Road (North of Bodle Hill Rd) is underway. Carrizo Oil and Gas (out of Houston, TX) filed a permit application for a vertical Marcellus well on a 43-acre unit back on May 17 of this year. A couple months later - August 9 - the NY State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) approved the application and issued a drilling permit. According to the DEC records, Carrizo began drilling on September 18; at least that's the "spud date" reported.
But, say the locals, the drilling rig just went up a couple days ago, complete with stadium lights that can be seen at least a mile away. This is supposed to be a "test" well; given that the industry insists that Marcellus is all over the place, we're not too sure what exactly they're testing for - unless it's for local resistance.

Ironically, even as Carrizo was moving their rig into New York, Pennsylvania Senator Jim Ferlo and other PA lawmakers were calling on their state to "enact a drilling moratorium during which a comprehensive study on the effects of fracking would take place." Ferlo's concerns: impacts on public health, environmental impact, and the erosion of infrastructure needed to support PA's commerce including agriculture, tourism, hunting, fishing and recreation.

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