Shale gas webinar to look at response to challenges of Bakken oil development

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Community challenges related to the growth of the Bakken oil fields in North Dakota are similar to those generated by development of the Marcellus Shale gas play in Pennsylvania, according to experts familiar with both situations.

To help local leaders in Pennsylvania learn from the experiences of their North Dakota counterparts, Penn State Extension's Marcellus Education Team is offering a Web-based seminar that will cover how those challenges proactively are being met.

The webinar, titled "The Bakken Part 2:  Responding to the Challenges; Recommendations for the Future," will take place at 1 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 20.

Deb Nelson, program manager, Vision West ND, and Daryl Dukart, chairman of Vision West ND Consortium, will discuss oil development in North Dakota's shale basin. Dukart noted that the exponential growth rate of the Bakken oil play has tested local governments' traditional roles.

"Investing in the needs of western North Dakota is important to the entire economy of our state," he said. "The economic reach of the oil industry extends to every North Dakota community, and we must ensure that it stays healthy for decades to come."

Supporting the growth of Bakken communities helps them attract top talent from across the state. Reinvesting a portion of the revenues generated by western North Dakota back into western North Dakota ensures that the communities have the resources to grow, Dukart emphasized, adding that equitable investment of Bakken proceeds is a major goal of his consortium.

"The Vision West plan is a grassroots effort," he said. "With input from upwards of 2,000 people in a state as small and rural as North Dakota, we think it shows our state and our entire nation that our people are engaged in this regional plan."

Penn State Extension's Marcellus Education Team provides webinars, at least monthly, on a variety of topics. Upcoming webinars include the following:

--Dec. 11: "What We Know and Don't Know about Methane Emissions Associated with Shale Gas Production," Kenneth Davis, professor of meteorology, Penn State.

--January (date to be announced): "Underground Injection Wells," presenter from U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to be announced.=

Feb. 19: "Residual Treatment Water in Gas Shale," Terry Engelder, professor of geosciences, Penn State.

March 19: "Natural Gas Liquids: From Wellhead to Fractionation," Dan Brockett, Penn State Extension educator.

The webinars are free, but participants must register on the events page of the Penn State Extension Natural Gas website. The site also offers information about future webinars. Registrants must provide an email address to receive the link to the upcoming webinar.

Previous webinars, publications and information also are available on the Penn State Extension natural-gas website, covering a variety of topics, such as natural gas production and waste figures; oil and gas best practices; Act 13 (Pennsylvania's oil and gas law); the volume of gas in shale formations; seismic testing; air pollution from gas development; water use and quality; natural gas liquids; gas-leasing considerations for landowners; gas pipeline trends and right-of-way issues; legal issues surrounding gas development; the impact of Marcellus gas development on forestland; royalty calculations and decline curves; and reclamation of drill cuttings.

For more information, contact Carol Loveland at 570-320-4429 or by email at

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Last Updated January 09, 2015