Maryland’s Marcellus Shale Safe Drilling Initiative Advisory Committee meeting

Monday August 20, 2012

Pre-Commission Panel Discussion 4:50pm

Garrett College Continuing Ed, room 205

Maryland’s Marcellus Shale Safe Drilling Initiative Advisory Commission meeting 6-9pm

Garrett College Auditorium (agenda here)


“On August 20, 2012, the public is invited to attend back-to-back meetings to learn more about the impacts of shale gas development.

Before the regular Governor’s commission meeting in McHenry, the community is invited to hear from two people involved in the shale gas complexities of our neighboring states.

Their presentations will begin at 4:50 p.m. in Room 205 at Garrett College (Continuing Education), and the program will end in time for the regular commission meeting at 6 p.m., a few strides away in the college auditorium. Commissioners as well as the general public are invited. There is no charge.

Attorney John M. Smith is a partner in the firm of Smith Butz LLC of Canonsburg, Pa. He represents several families in litigation against energy companies in Pennsylvania, including cases involving alleged water contamination resulting from shale gas drilling. Smith was also among the attorneys who successfully challenged Pennsylvania’s Act 13 law dealing with gas development, leading to a court ruling that the state’s attempts to preempt local zoning laws were unconstitutional, null, and void.

From another state, and an entirely different perspective, comes Tom Bond. A retired teacher who holds a Ph.D. in inorganic chemistry, Mr. Bond is a rancher with a 500-acre farm near Jane Lew, W. Va. He will relate his experiences and those of his neighbors whom he says were devastated by drilling; complaints range from property devaluation, threatened water supplies, and health concerns.

Questions will be accepted after their short presentations.

Although industry representatives have made presentations to the commission, and the panel has visited drilling sites, this marks the first opportunity for any commissioners who choose to attend to hear directly from people dealing with fall-out from shale gas development in adjoining states.

The MSAC meeting follows.
The governor has mandated that the Marcellus Shale Advisory Commission identify industrial best practices.  The MSAC meeting agenda includes a presentation by Brigid Kenney, Senior Policy Advisor for the Maryland Department of the Environment, who will provide an overview of the horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing processes, followed by presentations on research to date by the Departments of Natural Resources and Environment.
For more information about shale gas development visit


***This post was taken directly from a Citizen Shale email. For more information on Citizen Shale, visit