Are there any certified water-testing companies to have our well water tested? We are concerned that with all the drilling and prospective injection wells in the surrounding area that our well water may become contaminated with proprietary mystery liquids.
There are various options available to get water tested independently. For example, Heidelberg University offers water testing through its National Center for Water Quality Research program. The tests cost between $25 and $155 depending on what type of testing is being done. For information about the Heidleberg program, go online to www.heidelberg.edu/academiclife/distinctive/ncwqr/water/well.
Ohio State University also provides a list of companies available for water testing, their location and what type of materials for which they test.
Ohio State lists Cardinal Environmental Lab as the only water testing option in the Mahoning Valley.
The list of companies throughout the state is available at http://ohioline.osu.edu/aex-fact/pdf/0315.pdf.
County health organizations also have programs that meet the recommended three-tiered test to ensure proper water samples. This program takes multiple samples during different seasons to develop a baseline for water quality throughout the year.
Then the three tiers ensure that the water is tested and includes the chemicals most commonly found in the oil and gas industry. The cost for the three-tiered test in Trumbull County is $951 for all three tiers of testing recommended. Mahoning and Columbiana do not list costs online for their baseline testing programs.
State law also requires that companies test water that is located within 300 feet of proposed drilling sites. However, some people are worried those tests would not qualify as independent testing.
What do the new requirements from Senate Bill 315 mean in terms of well production, and where can I find the production reports?
For horizontal wells, companies must submit quarterly production reports to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. Low-volume horizontal wells remain subject to yearly reporting requirements. The quarterly reports must include information about the production of oil, dry gas, wet gas, condensate and brine.
The yearly reports can be viewed on the ODNR website at www.ohiodnr.com/oil/shale/tabid/23174/Default.aspx.
The quarterly production reports also will be available on the site when they become available.