Shale Gas Impacts on Northeastern PA

~GEA867.kmz – Google Maps.

Map of Well pads, pipelines, chemical spills, compressor stations… in Northeastern PA

You can zoom in and click on the symbols
and get an idea what the various symbols are for.

Here is a legend:
    Yellow pushpins = permitted pads;
    Yellow gas stations = fracked or producing wells;
    Red pushpins  = compressor stations
    Brown pushpins  = pipeline impact areas
    (only areas requiring permits – road or stream xing, wetlands, etc.)
    Brown circles = permitted hydrostatic testing discharge points;
    Blue drops = alternate waste management pits for fracked water
    Black pushpins = administrative violations, spill, contamination
    Wavy water = water withdrawal point

I will try to add this legend to the map itself.





Pipeline Integrity Management Mapping Application

The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration has developed the Pipeline Integrity Management Mapping Application (PIMMA) for use by pipeline operators and Federal, state, and local government officials only. The application contains sensitive pipeline critical infrastructure information that can be viewed via internet browser (Mozilla Firefox users should use Internet Explorer). PIMMA data is for reference purposes only, data cannot be downloaded from PIMMA. If you would like to request GIS data layers, please click here.

PIMMA is intended to be used solely by the person who is given access by the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration. Your user name and password should not be shared with other persons either within or outside of your organization. If another person expresses interest in using PIMMA, please have them contact the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration at, to obtain access. The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration monitors user activity and reserves the right to remove individual access rights.

Access to PIMMA is limited to Federal, State, and Local Government officials as well as pipeline operators. PIMMA access cannot be given to any person who is not a direct employee of a government agency. All applications will be processed by PHMSA personnel, who will respond as soon as possible.

Federal Government (FEDERAL AND MILITARY OFFICIALS ONLY): Federal Government officials wishing to obtain PIMMA access for the entire nation should apply here. If you are a Federal employee who only needs access to one or many states or counties, please fill out the State or Local Government applications below.

Federal Government PIMMA application

State and Local Government: State and Local Government officials can request access to the State and Local Government PIMMA by filling out and submitting an online application. Applicants will only be granted access to the jurisdiction they are employed by.

State Government PIMMA application

Local Government PIMMA application

Pipeline Operator (PIPELINE OPERATORS ONLY): Pipeline Operators can request access to the Pipeline Operator PIMMA by filling out and submitting an online application. Each pipeline operator will only be granted access to their respective pipelines, as defined by the Operator ID. Please be sure to enter your Operator ID(s).

Pipeline Operator PIMMA application

ShaleNavigator Mapping Service Adds Pipelines for ALL Shale Plays | Marcellus Drilling News

ShaleNavigator Mapping Service Adds Pipelines for ALL Shale Plays | Marcellus Drilling News.

Map of 81 corridor proposed pipeline

Map of 81 corridor proposed pipeline


ArcGIS – My Map.

Route I 81 Corridor Pipeline: proposed for Cortland, Broome, and Onondaga Counties

Do you know about the proposed new pipeline?  

The real name is“Millennium Phase-1 North-South Upstate Pipeline Connector” … but we call it the “I-81 Pipeline”.

It would affect the following towns:

ONONDAGA COUNTY: Onondaga,Otisco Lafayette.Tully

CORTLAND COUNTY: Preble, Homer, Cortlandville, Virgil, Lapeer

BROOME COUNTY: Lisle, Nanticoke, Maine, Union

Check the map to see if you live nearby…

Local Events:

Public Information Session on I81 Pipeline Joe Heath, Craig Stevens, Tues., Nov. 19th 6:30 pm at Lafayette High School, Lafayette, NY

Informational Meeting on I-81 Pipeline held Sept. 23 at Center for the Arts, Homer NY

Video Coverage

 SUNY Downtown, 9 Main St. Cortland.


We need volunteers to help fight this invasion of our communities:

Technical experts in geology, ecology, hydrology, energy policy, GIS, mapping, education, communication, social media,  PowerPoint and other presentation skills, research, writing testimony for regulatory agencies as well as people who can help inform local communities, landowners and government officials of the implications of a pipeline.  If you have concerns, there is a place for you in this endeavor!

Contact us at:


Additional Information Sources

Facebook Page: 

Like this new Facebook page: I81Pipeline

(Excellent and comprehensive information from group fighting the Constitution Pipeline)  


Several key projects are hitting all at once: The Constitution Pipeline, the Liberty LNG Port, and the Minisink compressor station all face mid-month deadlines. These are but three of the 24 gas infrastructure projects currently planned for New York State. The LNG port alone could change the landscape for New York and the tristate area by opening up the potential for a local export facility.


Details of Northeast Gas Infrastructure Expansion Projects


Industry Announcements of the I-81 Project


Natural Resources Along the Pipeline Route



Social & Cultural Resources

Aerial photos of Pipeline Construction

Background Information on Pipelines:

What Do Pipelines Portend?

Pipelines = Fracking.  The new federal fracking guidelines include an provision for no venting or flaring of gas at drilling, so pipes have to be in place before wells are drilled.  This lays the infrastructure for expanding the extraction of methane to more communities.
Pipelines = Eminent Domain.  A taking of your land “for the public good”.   Learn about what this means.
Pipelines = Danger.  From the PHMSA Pipeline Haz. Materials and Safety Administration – last decade 5600 fires and explosions and almost 400 deaths in the US alone from ‘significant’ pipelines incidents.  This does not count leaky pipes and ‘minor’ breaks resulting in dangerous incidents.
Pipelines = Compressors  Compressor stations are required every few dozen miles, and compressor stations outgas toxic gasses continually and have proven to be more dangerous to live near than wellpads.  This 24″ (at least) line would require large compressors to push the gas through, running 24/7 and outgassing known carcinogenic volatile organics that airborne, ultimately end up in the water, soil and our food.  
We have to get on top of the convoluted and segmented permitting process, to gather a voice against the further investment in unconventional gas and oil development.  
We need all hands on deck for this.   There is work to be done so this ‘proposal’ does not become a reality. 
Learn about the permitting process, easements, ramifications of eminent domain and restrictions on landowner rights re easements.   Learn how to become involved in the process.  Learn about the history of the old pipeline along the same route, and some of the geology of the route, and meet your neighbors and friends to stop this pipeline from bringing fracked gas t

Millennium Announcement of “Open Season”

Natural gas shipper proposes new pipeline from Binghamton to Syracuse area |  5/15/13

Pipeline Brochures:  



Municipal Involvement


Gas Pipelines: What Municipalities Need to Know (Video from 2012 Ithaca meeting)

Streaming Video (Playlist):

Downloads (Media RSS Video & Audio):

iTunes (Video):

Gas Pipelines: What Municipalities Need to Know
May 17, 2012. Ithaca, NY. Free Twenty interstate natural gas pipeline systems crisscross the region from West Virginia to Maine. As gas drilling operations expand, thousands of miles of new pipelines will be needed to connect existing pipelines to gas wells. Learn the difference between gathering, transmission, and distribution lines; what agencies have jurisdiction over the various types of lines; how pipelines are permitted, regulated, and monitored; and how municipalities can prepare for an increase in pipeline networks.

Presenters: Sharon Anderson, Environmental Program Leader, Cornell Cooperative Extension Tompkins County; Jim Austin, Environmental Certification and Compliance, State of New York Department of Public Service; Deborah Goldberg, Managing Attorney, Earthjustice Northeast Regional Office; Meghan Thoreau, Planner, Southern Tier Central Regional Planning and Development Board.

Co-sponsored by Cornell Cooperative Extension Tompkins County and Tompkins County Council of Governments.

Local Governments Should Officially Intervene in FERC Process

General information on gas infrastructure

Pipelines, Compressors, Storage, Metering Stations — Siteing, Regulation, Public Input, Safety

Note: I have used this. It is clunky and clumsy but the only thing I have encountered that let me find with some precision some lines that run within 4 mi west of me between the Tenessee line and the Millenium line. This is of considerable importance because those Rights of Way will very likely become major conduits and regions where compressors will pop up. One of the lines I was able to trace as far north as Cortland before I lost interest and tracing was getting hard.   There is a glitch when trying to trace over a state line, but there is a workaround by just tracing up to the border and then doing another run starting on the other side of the border.  Stan Scobie, Binghamton, NY, 607-669-4683

Storage and Transport Infrastructure

Finger Lakes Gas Storage and Infrastructure Project.  Salt Caverns,  Watkins Glen, NY Even if no fracking occurs in NY, Inergy intends to turn our region into the gas storage and transportation hub of the Northeastern United states- the salt caverns are empty and waiting, the railways are in place, and we’re not paying enough attention to this!

Inergy: Making Marcellus Happen (Watch the video)

Inergy, LP (Finger Lakes LPG Storage, LLC) based in Kansas City is a pipeline and natural gas storage company with approximately 3,000 employees and annual sales of about $1.8 billion.
In 2008, Inergy purchased the U.S. Salt plant on the west side of Seneca Lake approximately 2 miles north of Watkins Glen to “build an integrated gas storage and transportation hub in the Northeast.”

Details of the Inergy proposal include:

  • Construct and operate a new underground LPG storage facility for the storage and distribution of propane and butane on a portion of a 576 acre site near the intersection of Rts. 14 and 14A in the Town of Reading.
  • Proposed storage capacity of 2.10 million barrels (88.20 million gallons)
  • Construction of a 14 acre brine pond located on a steep slope just above Seneca Lake with a capacity of 91.8 million gallons.
  • Construction of a new rail and truck LPG transfer facility consisting of:  A 6 track rail siding capable of allowing loading/unloading of 24 rail cars every 12 hours 24/7/365.  A truck loading station capable of loading 4 trucks per hour (with the possibility to expand) 24/7/365.
  • Construction also to include surface works consisting of truck and rail loading terminals, LPG storage tanks, offices and other distribution facilities and stormwater control structures.

Please refer to the “Resources” page for more detailed information on the project and its potentially devastating environmental consequences.

To stay informed please join the Gas Free Seneca Listserv.

  • Inergy CEO Statement on Making Marcellus Happen:
    Even if no fracking occurs in NY, Inergy intends to turn our region into the gas storage and transportation hub of the Northeastern United states- the salt caverns are empty and waiting, the railways are in place, and we’re not paying enough attention to this!

Eminent Domain:

Spectra Energy Watch–Property Rights Eminent Domain

  • Is a Gas Company a Utility? One of the things the Tioga County Landowners group has discussed in public meetings is the importance of making sure landowners have good pipeline leases – even if they don’t have drilling. The idea, I believe, is that by offering a way to get gas from well to major transmission line, the gas companies won’t be tempted to gain status as a utility which would allow them powers of eminent domain for the gathering lines.  Well, here’s how Chief Oil & Gas got around that little hurdle in Susquehanna County, PA – they got permission to use state highway ROW. Not a good precedent for those who would like to lease pipeline routes, and for those who want to have no pipelines across their property.
  • Report of Laser Hearings in Windsor 10-20-10

I was one of about 65 people in the auditorium of Windsor High School as officials of the Public Service Commission and Laser Northeast Gathering Company first gave their information presentations and then answered questions and listened to statements from the public.

A 5 member Commission body, under Administrative Law Judge Howard Jack, will, at some point in the future, make a determination to either deny, grant with conditions, or approve the application to construct a 16 inch pipeline capable of carrying up to 170 million cu ft of gas per day. (Asked if the pipeline was being planned to serve more than the 18 wells stated in the application, Laser reps answered with the flow volume, and admitted that it could serve hundreds of wells. At the same time they said that the wells in PA that are now producing are not producing gas at a high rate.) Because the application is for a line that is less than 10 miles in length the PSC is not required under Article VII <>  to give the application its “full review”. Article VII was created in 1970 and actions under this law are not subject to SEQR (created at a later date). Neither does an Art VII certificate grant eminent domain or property rights.

We were told that Laser has been working for a year with not only the Town of Windsor but with the 1700 member Windsor Landowner Pipeline Coalition to put the pieces in place for this project. Windsor has enacted road protection and noise ordinances <>. The landowners have negotiated contracts. Laser owns the 40 acre parcel for the compressor station.

The audience asked questions about compressor station maintenance and noise, about emergency planning, odorizing the gas in the lines, depth under roads and rivers, and environmental protections during the construction phase.

I asked several questions about maintenance and gas leak monitoring. The Laser reps told me that the station will be monitored closely and that they have the capacity to “count gas molecules entering and leaving the station”. They did Not say that the incoming and outgoing volume is balanced but said instead that it is “reconciled”. And no, they have never considered using infra-red technology to look for leaks. And No, the gas “is not required to be” odorized.

There are 80 residences on the perimeter of the 40 acre parcel that will hold the compressor station. Several people asked questions about noise. The PSC standard is 40 decibels at any residence. The Windsor ordinance states: maximum noise levels  “During daytime hours: ambient noise levels plus five (5) dBA. During nighttime hours: ambient noise levels plus three (3) dBA. Additionally, until demonstrated by the applicant or by the Town, ambient noise or sound levels within the Town of Windsor shall be assumed to be 35 dBA.

Using the “Teacher’s Resource Guide” < > I find that they rate 40 decibels the noise level in a library.

I asked if compliance with the Windsor ordinance is required under the Art. VII certificate and was told that “it could be”.

During the public comment part of the evening, there were 7 presentations. Of those 7, 5 people lauded the Laser company for the wonderful job they have done in bringing this opportunity to the people of Windsor. Two people (one of them Deborah Goldberg) spoke for full review, no pipelines before SGEIS approval, cumulative impact study, and for tighter environmental protections.

If you have gotten this far in reading you understand that the landowner coalitions did a good job of getting their members out to this hearing. The company reps did their usual job of talking slick. The PSC administrators need to hear from lots more people who want a full review (this pipeline will be much more than 10 miles in length when they get any of the laterals in place).  Visit , and scroll down to the comment section.

Pipelines are coming to your neighborhood folks! Do you want to live next to a compressor station with its attendant noise and air pollution? We need to make a larger stink than they plan to make or these things will be rubber stamped into place. Remember, they need pipelines to put the gas into before they drill. If the pipelines are here the drillers will come.

Request full review. Request infra-red monitoring and odorizing of the gas. Request environmental protections and full cumulative study.
Marie McRae
Dryden Resource Awareness Coalition.  Wednesday, July 7, 2010

  • Pa. to Corning gas line gets OK: “…Corning, N.Y. — A proposed $43 million gas pipeline from the Pennsylvania border up to Corning has received approval from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, clearing the way for construction next summer. Empire Pipeline’s new 15-mile-long, 24-inch pipeline will carry Marcellus Shale gas produced in Pennsylvania north to Corning, where it will connect with the Millennium Pipeline…The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, based in Washington, D.C., determined the project would not have a significant environmental impact. The agency’s assessment was detailed in a 119-page report sent to The Leader last week. The report is posted online at . Several other local, state and federal agencies were involved in the review…FERC’s approval gives Empire Pipeline the right to use eminent domain, although company officials say that’s a last resort. They have already been negotiating compensation deals with landowners. About 50 area residents attended a presentation and public hearing in Corning back in late April, but no one voiced opposition…” ” (Corning Leader) (NY & PA)-

Accidents, Spills, Explosions of Pipelines and other Gas installations: 

Ageing Pipelines



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Various Pipeline Maps

Bill Huston’s Blog (Binghamton NY): Various Pipeline Maps.

Hill and Hollow Unit Management Plan

Hill and Hollow Unit Management Plan.

Taylor Valley Unit Management Plan

Taylor Valley Unit Management Plan.

I just received notification of a March  public meeting in Truxton to discuss the Draft Unit Management Plan for Taylor Valley.  I think it will be important to flood that meeting with concerned citizens from the area.


The following   action by the DEC  is proposed in  the January  2013 Draft Taylor Valley Unit Management Plan ( ).   Is the DEC anticipating a reversal of the decision not to allow surface activity associated with drilling in our state forests?     The final paragraph of page 60 says the following:


“This prohibition is subject to change if the Draft Supplemental Generic Environmental Statements regarding Well Permit Issuance for Horizontal Drilling and High-Volume Fracturing to Develop the Marcellus Shale and Other Low-Permeability Gas Reservoirs is amended during finalization processes.”


Here’s a more extended quote from the Draft Unit Management Plan:


b. Consider future requests for oil and gas leasing using an open public process while protecting natural and recreational resources. Prior to leasing lands in this Unit, an open public process must be followed. This process includes coordination with the Division of Mineral Resources to determine: areas that can be leased with full rights granted (100% surface entry and no special conditions required); areas that may require special environmental and safety conditions; and areas that may be leased with no surface-disturbance/entry conditions (non-drilling clause). The following is a summary of the leasing process of State Forest lands:

Receive requests to nominate specific lands within the Unit for leasing of mineral rights, from interested parties.

Conduct tract assessments of nominated properties to determine where lands are able to support or accommodate related surface disturbance associated with oil and gas exploration, development, and extraction. Factors considered during the tract assessment process include the proximity to sensitive resources of the Unit. These resources include, but are not limited to certain management strategies, wetland, riparian zones, steep slopes, recreational trails and areas, unique ecological communities, habitat of rare and endangered species, archeological and cultural sites and scenic vistas and view sheds.

o Apply a hierarchical approach that classifies areas of each State Forest into four categories as part of a tract assessment to be conducted prior to leasing.

§ Category A ‐ Compatible with well pad, road, and utility development. These areas can be considered the least sensitive to surface disturbance and should be considered first for well pad development to limit the overall impact of development. Examples of Category A areas include open fields, conifer plantations, and even-aged management areas.

§ Category B ‐ Uneven-age Management Areas with one well pad per State Forest. These areas are being managed for species that require large blocks of un-fragmented (diameters of temporary openings in the canopy shall be no larger than 2.5 times the height of surrounding trees) forests.

§ Category C ‐ 250-foot stream and designated recreational trail buffers. Not compatible with well pad development; may be compatible with road and utility development.

§ Category D – Infrastructure Exclusion areas. Not compatible with well pad, road, or utility development. These include: ponds, wetlands, spring seeps, and vernal pools with appropriate 250-foot buffers; slopes greater than 15 percent; archeological and cultural concerns; and areas being managed as Natural Areas.

o Prohibit surface disturbance associated with high-volume hydraulic fracturing. This prohibition is subject to change if the Draft Supplemental Generic Environmental Statements regarding Well Permit Issuance for Horizontal Drilling and High-Volume Fracturing to Develop the Marcellus Shale and Other Low-Permeability Gas Reservoirs is amended during finalization processes.



Is it a coincidence that there has been heavy logging in the state forest next to my home for the past two summers? Well-pad sized sections have been clear-cut or significantly thinned in Kennedy State Forest, and pipeline-width corridors have been cleared of debris.   It could be coincidence,  but this logging activity was well ahead of scheduled logging in the management plan for Kennedy State Forest  (according to conversations I had with the forester).    The clearing areas are congruent with the Department’s 2008(?) published maps of “Areas compatible with drilling. ”  Now the Draft Unit Management Plan  for Taylor Valley  shows that the DEC is planning for a possible reversal of the prohibition against surface activity associated with hvhf.  Has the DEC planned to allow drilling in the state forests all along  -despite claims to the contrary in the revised SGEIS?


Strategic Plan for State Forest Management – NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation

Strategic Plan for State Forest Management – NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation.

The plan has been edited based on public input and is now considered final, and will be used to guide the management of all State Forests and for the development of State Forest unit management plans. A responsiveness document has been incorporated as an appendix to the plan, and includes DEC’s responses to the many comments received. Revision of the plan is scheduled to occur every 10 years.


Complete plan. This is a very large document and may take a long time to download.
Complete Plan (PDF)
 (14.4 MB)

This is a large file and may take a long time to download.

Cover — Chapter 1 (PDF) (5.5 MB)
Chapter 2 — Chapter 4 (PDF) (4.3 MB)
Chapters 5 — 7 and Appendices (PDF) (4.2 MB)

Executive Summary (PDF) (3 MB)
A brief 11 page overview of the plan.

SPSFM Additional Resources

The following additional resources have been referenced in the strategic plan and are listed according to Chapter and Section of reference.

Chapter 1 – New York State Forests

Management Planning Overview

Statewide Map of Units and UMP Completion Schedule (PDF, 203 K)
A statewide schedule, organized by year of first draft completion, and map delineating the new UMP boundaries

Chapter 2 – Ecosystem Management

Landscape Assessment

TNC Ecoregions – full size map (PDF, 1.09 MB)
Map of The Nature Conservancy Ecoregions and State Forest ecoregional distribution

Active Forest Management

Forest Matrix Blocks and Connectivity – full size map (PDF, 872 K)
Map of matrix blocks and “least cost path” LCP corridors showing potential State Forest contributions to habitat connectivity across New York’s landscape

Program Policy: Retention on State Forests (PDF, 139 K)
Policy for retention of forest habitat structure and biodiversity on State Forests during forest management activities

Program Policy: Clearcutting on State Forests (PDF, 142 K)
Policy for clearcutting or conducting other regeneration cuttings on State Forests

Chapter 3 – Resource Protection

Soil and Water Protection

Rules for Establishment of Special Management Zones on State Forests (PDF, 58 K)
Establishes the Bureau of State Land Management’s buffer guidelines to protect water resources and ecological features

Rutting Guidelines for Timber Harvests and TRPs (PDF, 49 K)
Guidelines to minimize surface impacts during harvesting and TRP activity

At-Risk Species and Communities

List of SGCN that Rely on Forested Habitat (PDF, 132 K)
A list created for the SPSFM, noting forest-dependent Species of Greatest Conservation Need (SGCN) by ecoregion, as identified in the NYS Comprehensive Wildlife Conservation Strategy

Chapter 4 – Real Property and Infrastructure


DEC Unpaved Forest Road Handbook (PDF, 618 K)
Establishes standards for the establishment and maintenance of public forest access roads and haul roads on State Forests

Chapter 5 – Public/Permitted Use

Mineral Resources

Current Oil and Gas Leases on State Forests (PDF, 29 K)
Listing of current leases by DEC region

Management of Mineral Resources (PDF, 92 K)
Memorandum of Understanding between Mineral Resources and Lands & Forests, along with collected law and regulations pertaining to minerals management

DRAFT Guidelines for Pipeline Construction on DEC Administered State Lands (PDF, 41 K)
Guidelines for construction of oil and natural gas pipelines

Guidelines for Seismic Testing on DEC Administered State Land (PDF, 23 K)
Guidelines for the use of seismic exploration to discover natural gas reserves and optimally site the drill location

What is Carbon Capture and Sequestration? (PDF, 2.12 MB)
Pamphlet explaining the technology

Chapter 6 – Forest Management and Health

Plantation Management

Program Policy: Plantation Management on State Forests (PDF, 68 K)
Policy providing guidance and procedures for managing plantations on State Forests

Forest Health

Invasive Plant Control Methods (PDF, 174 K)
Suggested methods for controlling select invasive plant species on State Forests