You did it! Your collaborative image analysis effort with FrackFinder PA helped us build a map showing all of the active Marcellus Shale gas-drilling sites across the entire state of Pennsylvania in 2005, 2008, 2010 and 2013. More important, you identified all of the open-air fluid impoundments related to those drilling sites and the process of hydraulic fracturing (fracking). We’re about to deliver that dataset to researchers at the Bloomberg School of Public Health (part of John Hopkins University) so they can investigate the respiratory and neonatal health implications of living near modern drilling sites. Soon, we will post that dataset online so anyone can download it for their own analysis or research.
But we can’t stop there. Drilling is booming across the US, thanks to the combination of horizontal drilling and fracking targeting what were formerly un-tappable reserves of oil and gas. In neighboring Ohio, drilling mostly targets the Utica Shale, but there are some Marcellus Shale wells too. We need your help with FrackFinder Ohio to identify active well pads on high-resolution aerial imagery from 2010, 2011 and 2013.
And we are working on figuring out how to incorporate some smokin’ hot, super hi-res imagery shot by our friends at LightHawk in June. (That’s right, this June.) Students from Walsh University will help us ground-truth some of the drilling sites you identify. And, as always, the data will be made available to anyone who has a legitimate research, education, or public outreach need.
So help us build the gas-drilling map of Ohio. It’s easy; it’s fun to look at imagery; and you’ll be contributing to a unique dataset that can help scientists answer fundamental questions about the impacts of modern oil and gas drilling.