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Marcellus shale Web site launched by DEC

As landowners and municipal officials continue to seek information about possible horizontal drilling for natural gas in the Marcellus Shale formation, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has launched a new Web page designed to provide details about drilling processes, leasing, federal and state laws, links to relevant sites, and the upcoming review of potential environmental impacts. The new page can be found at: http://www.dec.ny.gov/energy/46288.html#Information.

"As drilling companies seek to secure leases around the Southern Tier and Catskill Foothills, New Yorkers are raising questions about this potential new activity. And they need accurate information," said DEC Commissioner Pete Grannis. "This new Web page - which will be regularly updated - will provide a fact-based resource about Marcellus Shale exploration and the environmental review."

The Web page will include facts about drilling, Marcellus Shale maps and links to other pages, such as the DEC's searchable database for existing oil and gas wells, the Landowner's Guide to Oil and Gas Leasing, the Susquehanna River Basin Commission and the Delaware River Basin Commission (the two entities that regulate water withdrawals in the regions likely to be tapped).

"Oil and gas drilling in New York has been around since the 19th century and is an important industry, with hundreds of drilling permits issued every year," Grannis said. "Given the Department's experience, and our rigorous regulatory program, we are well-equipped to address the many issues presented by the proposed horizontal drilling in the Marcellus Shale. Conveying complete and accurate information to the public is critical to ensuring that all questions are answered and all issues considered, and this web page will be a centralized source of that information."

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