Rebutting the Old Slime

Ever since activity increased within the Marcellus Shale play, there have been several so-called “environmental impacts” that have received both statewide and national media attention.

We want to take the time to squeegee off some of the slime and share some REAL facts about these Classic Old Slime Myths.


Distortion #1: Natural gas industry activities responsible for Dunkard Creek fish kill

The Perp’s Speculation By Don Hopey Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Oct. 4, 2009 “An invasive toxic algae, blamed for contributing to the massive Dunkard Creek fish kill along the Pennsylvania-West Virginia border, may have hitchhiked to the region aboard equipment used in Marcellus shale drilling. The Facts Win It did not hitch-hike on drilling equipment, but toxic [...]


Distortion #2: The New York Times reports false contamination claims

The Perp’s Speculation In 2011, The New York Times took sliming to a new level when it published a highly speculative story claiming potential contamination of Pennsylvania waterways with naturally occurring radioactive material from drilling operations, linked below. The problem? It simply wasn’t true, as evidenced by a sampling program implemented by the state Department [...]


Distortion #3: The Feds clear up accusations of contaminated well water in Dimock, PA

The Perp’s Speculation The water in Dimock first became the focus of international attention after residents there alleged in 2009 that natural gas drilling had led to widespread contamination. State officials suggested that inadequate well construction techniques allowed methane to seep into several Dimock water wells. EPA began its own sampling of 60 homes water [...]


Distortion #4: PennEnvironment utilizes photography magic to advance agenda

The Perp’s Speculation A special slime recognition is in order for PennEnvironment, a group that first published a photo of a flooded drilling rig as a scare tactic during flooding in northeast Pennsylvania in the fall of 2011. One slight detail was overlooked . . . The flooded drilling site was, in fact,located in Pakistan. [...]


Distortion #5: Natural gas industry is the easy suspect for elevated levels of Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) in Monongahela River

The Perp’s Speculation The elevated TDS situation in the Monongahela River was reported by local and national media outlets, including the New York Times. ProPublica seized the opportunity and went further in an October 4, 2009 article, predicting a far more threatening scenario in the future by suggesting the need for “protecting the state’s water [...]