Caption: Tim Ziegler on the new, improved Marcellus Shale drilling road., Credit: Emily Reddy
Image by: Emily Reddy 
Tim Ziegler on the new, improved Marcellus Shale drilling road. 

A Quest to Make Marcellus Roads More Environmentally Friendly

From: WPSU-FM
Length: 10:12

Marcellus Shale drilling is ripping up roads. The sediment from the roads winds up in streams and ruins the ecosystem. The Center for Dirt and Gravel Road Studies at Penn State is trying to talk drillers into fixing up the roads before they use them. We take a trip to Luzerne County with a guy from the Center to check out a project road they’ve done in conjunction with the drilling company and the local conservation district. This is a long piece done as a semi-character study. The guy the story follows got into this because he’s a big trout fisherman. The sediment really ruins trout fishing, and the Center was actually created by Trout Unlimited which is concerned about the pollution of fishing streams.

Tim_ziegler_photo_small Marcellus shale drilling across Pennsylvania has expanded tremendously in the last couple of years. To extract the natural gas, companies drill straight down about 5-thousand feet then shoot a high-pressured water mixed with chemicals and sand vertically through the shale to release the gas. It’s called hydrofracturing, or “fracking.” The whole process requires heavy equipment and millions of gallons of water to be trucked in over roads built to carry passenger cars. WPSU's Emily Reddy went to Luzerne County to find out an unexpected environmental impact of ruined roads and the unlikely group that’s trying to do something about it. 

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Piece Description

Marcellus shale drilling across Pennsylvania has expanded tremendously in the last couple of years. To extract the natural gas, companies drill straight down about 5-thousand feet then shoot a high-pressured water mixed with chemicals and sand vertically through the shale to release the gas. It’s called hydrofracturing, or “fracking.” The whole process requires heavy equipment and millions of gallons of water to be trucked in over roads built to carry passenger cars. WPSU's Emily Reddy went to Luzerne County to find out an unexpected environmental impact of ruined roads and the unlikely group that’s trying to do something about it. 

Transcript

LIVE READ:
You’re listening to Morning Edition on WPSU, I’m Emily Reddy.
Marcellus shale drilling across Pennsylvania has expanded tremendously in the last couple of years. To extract the natural gas, companies drill straight down about 5-thousand feet then shoot a high-pressured water mixed with chemicals and sand vertically through the shale to release the gas. It’s called hydrofracturing, or “fracking.” The whole process requires heavy equipment and millions of gallons of water to be trucked in over roads built to carry passenger cars. I went to Luzerne County to find out an unexpected environmental impact of ruined roads and the unlikely group that’s trying to do something about it.

ON TAPE:
Tim Ziegler likes to fish. A lot. But he doesn’t get to do it as much as he’d like to anymore. He’s got a wife, two kids, a house and a mortgage to take care of, after all. He still get...
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Intro and Outro

INTRO:

Marcellus shale drilling across Pennsylvania has expanded tremendously in the last couple of years. To extract the natural gas, companies drill straight down about 5-thousand feet then shoot a high-pressured water mixed with chemicals and sand vertically through the shale to release the gas. It’s called hydrofracturing, or “fracking.” The whole process requires heavy equipment and millions of gallons of water to be trucked in over roads built to carry passenger cars. WPSU's Emily Reddy went to Luzerne County to find out an unexpected environmental impact of ruined roads and the unlikely group that’s trying to do something about it.

OUTRO:

Ziegler doesn’t have any leverage here – and he knows it. He knows he’s up against big companies with even bigger plans. He’s basically a fisherman spreading the gospel of good drainage to some incredibly rich businessmen, hoping they’ll “do the right thing.” It’s the only argument he’s got.

I’m Emily Reddy, WPSU.

Related Website

http://www.dirtandgravelroads.org/