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Environment & Energy

After PA Couple Discovers Plan to Drill on Unleased Land, Energy Company Cancels Permit

Katie Colaneri
StateImpact Pennsylvania

It all started with beans.

Joyce and Steve Libal run a small orchard on their 63-acres in Little Meadows, Susquehanna County where they sell fruit and organic vegetables.

One day in early September, a friend came by to purchase ten pounds of green bush beans.

“In this area, with all the drilling going on, the conversations usually end up talking about the gas industry,” Steve Libal says. “And he just brought up that he had seen, he’s a borough councilman and they received a packet of information about a well pad behind our house.”

A map the gas company, Talisman Energy, sent to the municipality shows a plan for a well pad just beyond the thick row of trees at the back of their property. A dotted line shows a well bore moving 2,000 feet across their land.

“I just thought this has to be some sort of horrible mistake,” Joyce said. “Someone made a mistake and we have to enlighten them so they can fix it.”

The DEP approved Talisman Energy’s permit and informed the couple they had 30 days to appeal to the Environmental Hearing Board.

That left the Libals with two choices: they could hire a lawyer to appeal or they could consider signing a lease.

Read the entire story at the website of our partner, State Impact Pennsylvania.