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DEP Improves Public Access to Oil and Gas Annual Report
Pennsylvania Ag Connection - 05/18/2017

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has published its 2016 Oil and Gas Annual Report in an interactive, electronic format to improve public access to well information. It's the first time the report has been published electronically.

"Pennsylvania is the second-largest producer of natural gas in the country and one of the most transparent states in making oil and gas data publicly accessible," said DEP Acting Secretary Patrick McDonnell. "Making the Annual Report completely digital is just the next step in our continued effort to share as much information as possible."

Built on the ESRI platform, data are geolocated in GIS maps and real-time, drawing from DEP's daily electronic compliance tracking system updates. The report presents 2016 data on permit activity, inspections, operator compliance, and enforcements for conventional and unconventional wells.

Recent trends are also noted throughout the report. For example, in 2016 natural gas production from unconventional wells reached its highest level (about 5.1 trillion cubic feet) while the number of new unconventional wells drilled was the lowest since 2008.

Much more detailed information is readily available. For example, not only is the number of unconventional well drilling permits per county shown (1,321 total), but the permits are mapped. By clicking on a location, anyone can obtain the permit number, operator name, issuance date, and other information.

For a deeper dive, visitors can use the permit number and click into the Oil and Gas Mapping site to learn production data, inspection results, and any compliance actions taken by DEP.

The 2016 Annual Report features an expanded section on public participation. Visitors can learn how to attend Oil and Gas Technical Advisory Board Meetings in person or by webinar; provide e-comments on regulations, policies, general permits, and other proposals under development; and sign up for email notifications.

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