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Penn State Marcellus Shale Summit

October 27, 2010

This month, members of the PRI Marcellus Shale team attended the 3rd annual Penn State Marcellus Shale summit. The summit took place in Pennsylvania where shale gas drilling is actively occurring, and for us as educators in New York, this was an important experience. We even saw a drilling rig on our way down and got off the highway to check it out!

While for most of us, this was the first meeting on the Marcellus Shale that we had attended, one of us had attended the summit in its first year. In the first year, many of the presenters were from the Susquehanna River Basin Commission, the Delaware River Basin Commission, Ducks Unlimited, and other environmental organizations. In the third year, however, many of these organizations were represented in the attendee list, but not in the presenter list. Presentations were heavily weighed toward the different workers in the shale gas play, including the gas companies, worker safety organizations and training companies, and other workforce members. There was also an interesting session on the Penn State researchers who were conducting research on aspects of the Marcellus Shale.

While the experience was different in year 3 than it was in year 1, it was certainly a valuable one for all of us. Most importantly, we took away 3 very important experiences:

1) Talking with gas companies and listening to their presentations were valuable because these companies shared data and information with us that has not yet been published.

2) Exhibitors shared with us the water recycling technologies that had been developed for sale or rent for gas companies to recycle their water onsite. These have developed recently and as a results of the constraints of water processing here in the East Coast.

3) We made connections with landowner attendees who were actively experiencing gas drilling on their property to hear their varied experiences.

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