Having read countless articles with all sorts of claims about natural gas drilling and the proposal to drill under Deer Lakes Park, I had to provide my perspective, as a resident of northeastern Allegheny County who has watched drilling take place here.
Range Resources and Huntley & Huntley have successfully drilled and fracked wells here, including several very visible wells that were drilled near Pittsburgh Mills Mall that extended horizontally under the mall.
These wells were drilled safely and without any impact to the local community. There was no impact to the mall, either.
Now, the county has the chance to benefit from a similar approach to drilling: no impact to Deer Lakes Park, yet all the financial returns of having the “laterals” extend under the park. When you put together the generous royalty payments and the park improvement fund with the tight conditions in the lease, it becomes clear: County council should approve the ordinance to drill under Deer Lakes.