DEP Gives Gas Industry Group $150,000 Grant To Study Drilling

Dec 5, 2014

In this Monday, June 25, 2012, file photo, a crew works on a drilling rig at a well site for shale based natural gas in Zelienople, Pa.
Credit AP Photo/Keith Srakocic

The state Department of Environmental Protection has awarded a $150,000 non-competitive grant to an industry-backed nonprofit organization. The money was allocated in last year’s state budget specifically for “independent research regarding natural gas drilling.”

As StateImpact Pennsylvania previously reported, the grant recipient is a Pittsburgh-based nonprofit called the Shale Alliance for Energy Research (SAFER PA). It formed in 2013 as a partnership between industry and academia. Its board has three representatives from Pennsylvania universities and five members from the oil and gas industry.

Other groups were not able to compete for the grant money because the DEP said SAFER PA is “the only known research organization that is comprised of both private and public entities … with a specific focus of conducting scientific research and development of shale related projects.”

Read more of this report at the website of our partner StateImpact Pennsylvania.