Researching the Impact of Natural Gas Drilling

Results show impact in semiarid climates not as great as expected

Newswise — Aug. 19, 2017 - The installation of natural gas wells requires soil reclamation efforts after installation. These efforts are often hindered by salt-affected soils, weed invasions and slow plant establishment.  

The “Soil Changes Before, During, and After Natural Gas Drilling” presentation planned at the Managing Global Resources for a Secure Future ASA, CSSA, SSSA International Annual Meeting in Tampa, FL, will address this important topic. The presentation will be held Monday, October 23, 2017, at 3:20 PM. The meeting is sponsored by the American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and the Soil Science Society of America.

Jay Norton, University of Wyoming, has been researching reclamation at three Wyoming production areas. He researched nine planned natural gas well pads over seven years. His results suggest organic carbon rebounded in eight years at the site that started with highest soil organic carbon content. But in more arid and saline sites organic carbon remained lower than pre-disturbance values. He will also review re-establishment of native vegetation, which appears to be partly dependent on climate.

For more information about the 2017 meeting, visit https://www.acsmeetings.org/. Media are invited to attend the conference. Pre-registration by Oct. 10, 2017 is required. Visit https://www.acsmeetings.org/media for registration information. For information about “Soil Changes Before, During, and After Natural Gas Drilling” visit https://scisoc.confex.com/crops/2017am/webprogram/Paper107012.html.

To speak with one of the scientists, contact Susan V. Fisk, 608-273-8091, sfisk@sciencesocieties.org to arrange an interview. 

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