I’ve posted on occasion about the impending gas drilling near my home. It’s been in neighboring townships for several years. There have been whispers and speculation about when it would show up here. In the summer of 2010, we signed a lease agreement with Range Resources, but that didn’t mean they’d actually DO anything.
Then they purchased my neighbor’s farm. We received letters regarding water testing because they MIGHT drill somewhere nearby. They came out and tested our well, our creek, and our spring.
Note: I could have gone merrily along my way for quite some time without knowing what was actually in my well water. Reading that report was like reading the list of ingredients on your favorite junk food. You really don’t want to know what’s in there.
Anyhow, there’s been a lot of activity happening on the hill behind my house. I can’t see anything from here, but I can hear the big machinery. I don’t know what they were doing the other night, but I was sitting in my office listening to a distant thump thump thump, as if Big Foot were hiking across our hillside.
From certain vantage points along the road, you can see the mound of dirt they’ve moved, as well as the massive trucks and dozers. Something is definitely going on up there.
On Monday, it became official. A man from Range knocked at my door. He was notifying everyone within a certain distance of the new well site, that drilling was indeed imminent. He had to confirm contact numbers. In case of an emergency, someone will call us immediately.
He gave me a folder containing a letter describing what was about to happen and what we could expect to see (increased truck traffic…Meanwhile, I can hardly get across the road to pick up my mail NOW) and several pieces of informative literature about natural gas and what’s in the stuff they’re going to pump into the ground, etc, etc, etc. And if we have any other questions, he gave me a card.
I’ve stated before that I’m on the fence about this. I’m definitely looking forward to royalty checks. But I’ve hated to see our rural area die. There used to be cattle and horses everywhere. I used to wake up each morning to the bawling of cows calling to their youngsters. I used to mark the coming of spring by the increasing numbers of romping calves in the fields surrounding my house.
Now the farmers have all sold off their livestock. There are still several active horse farms within a mile radius, but not within sight of my windows. The landscape is void of animal life.
And now it’s about to become industrial.
That bothers me.
But there’s no going back. Moving isn’t exactly an option. Where would I go? The entire region is being drilled.
So I’m resigned to sit back and see what happens. Roll with the tide. Hope my water well isn’t made even WORSE as a result of the gas well just over the hill. And hope the royalty money is worth the aggravation.