Doddridge County Fracking Site Visited by Student Group

by Duane Nichols on March 16, 2013

WV Host Farms Photo

Fracking Site via WV Host Farms Program

From an Article by Diane Pitcock, WV Host Farms Project, March 16, 2013

We took this video clip standing up on our ridge top ….  on OUR private property next to an adjoining Marcellus drilling site. Our neighbor leased his minerals to Antero and they call it the “Erwin Valley Project.” Four separate well pads are on his land, having 27 individual permits for horizontal legs as part of the project.

This Ruckman well pad is butted up against our property border. What a unique opportunity this made for the WV Host Farms Program to be born! It’s access for the environmental community … researchers, journalists, student groups, environmental advocacy organizations, etc., etc., to come to WV and access at ground zero …and do so from the private properties of volunteer landowners like ourselves.

So this week, the Mountain Justice Spring Break student group were at the Doddridge County Park. A week of workshops, music, guest speakers, and interaction with the locals to talk about the impacts of Mountain Top Removal and Marcellus Well Drilling. And they contacted me at WV Host Farms Program to give them a field trip opportunity so they could see what these enormous Marcellus well operations look like. Up close and personal. What a great opportunity for educational outreach it was!

Previous visitors to WV Host Farms have included Natural Resources Defense Council, various journalists and photographers,’s Sr. Environmental Editor, Tara Lohan; independent filmmakers, documentary producer Jolynn Minaar from South Africa who is producing the Un*earthed documentary about fracking the Karoo, and other visitors. All wanting to document Marcellus drilling up close and share the experience.

A video clip and the pictures were taken on the fracking site on the Ruckman well pad, Erwin Valley Project, New Milton, WV — A field trip was on Tues. 3-12-13. The Mt. Justice Spring Break student group came to our home for a campfire/marshmallow roast and then hiked up to our ridge top with their cameras in hand, to witness a fracking operation underway. Many were speechless. Some even in tears. All will go home with a lasting impression of the impacts of shale gas drilling on rural WV and our people who live near these sites. These young people got to see first-hand what these frack sites look like, and do so via access on PRIVATE PROPERTY (mine) that adjoined the well site. This is what the WV Host Farms Program is all about — window to the outside world to see what the drilling industry is doing to the people and lands in WV and to study the impacts and report on them.

I  share my fracking experiences with the rest of the world via the WV Host Farms Program initiative! And we have volunteer landowners networked in fourteen WV counties who offer the same kind of access into WV via their own private properties as well. They are volunteers for the WV Host Farm Program who are just concerned citizens like me  …. wanting to stand up for their rights to clean water, clean air, and the use and enjoyment of their homes and land. Is that too much to ask from the industry?

You can watch the video here.

And if you’ve never seen our web site … take a look at it here. We are busy cataloging hundreds of articles and research reports, photos, testimonials, case studies,”youtube” presentations, etc. that will be uploaded as time permits. It will show the American public the “rest of the story” that you won’t see/hear on those industry-sponsored commercials about shale gas drilling and it’s clean natural gas.

So please share this information, move it forward to all who will watch and listen, because we are concerned citizens and don’t have the benefit of millions and millions of advertising dollars that influence the public. But we have the Internet and email, so keep it moving if you will!

Diane Pitcock, WV Host Farms Program, Doddridge County, WV

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Duane Nichols March 17, 2013 at 9:09 pm

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