EPA’s Abandoned Wyoming Fracking Study One Retreat of Many by Abrahm Lustgarten for ProPublica When the Environmental Protection Agency abruptly retreated on its multimillion-dollar investigation into water contamination in a central Wyoming natural gas field last month, it […]
In the early spring of 2006, a nice man was in the area, promoting a chance to dream of better times for Bradford County and its farmers. There was promise of jobs for everyone and the farmer would generate money from signing a lease, and if a gas well was drilled on the farmer’s property he would become rich. Two years passed with little activity. By now, the older leases were about to expire, gas companies were beginning to drill, and excitement was in the air. Here, the majority of farmers signed early, receiving $5- $85/per acre. There was this belief that the person with the gas well would become the next “shaleionaires.” We later found out small acre properties started signing leases at $2,500/ per acre. By the spring of 2009, there was uneasiness among some of the farmers who had a gas well drilled on their property. The local newspaper was reporting contamination found in water wells, death occurring on a gas pad and the farmer was facing the fact that he could lose his farm due to a lawsuit based on the gas companies operation. For myself, I was thinking that our lucky neighbor was going to become the next Millionaire, because they had the gas well drilled on them. Soon my mind changed. Those farmers were facing penalties lodged against them, due to their land becoming industrial use instead of agricultural use.
In Jack's previous work he retired as the director of public safety for the state of Maryland, and before that served as a military intelligence operative traveling worldwide for the armed forces. Recently, Linda retired from the Culinary Department of Gettysburg College and now takes care of the Lodge full-time with her husband. Jack's story about Bradford County is a necessary piece of information when connecting the pieces to what's happening with Natural Gas Drilling in that area.