Northeastern (46th Annual) and North-Central (45th Annual) Joint Meeting (20–22 March 2011)

Paper No. 4
Presentation Time: 1:30 PM-5:30 PM


KOPKO, Alison E. and BAIN, Daniel J., Department of Geology and Planetary Science, University of Pittsburgh, 200 SRCC, 4107 O'Hara Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15260,

The Ten Mile Creek watershed in Greene County, Pennsylvania, has a rich history of bituminous coal mining and now is undergoing increasing hydraulic fracturing for the extraction of natural gas from the Marcellus Shale. Being a region impacted by room-and-pillar and longwall mining, the additional effects of natural gas extraction on the landscape is unknown. Developing this project, which characterizes a historical baseline of the Ten Mile Creek watershed’s landscape, will create a clearer understanding of the activity that occurred.

Three data sets were gathered and analyzed in order to reconstruct the surface and subsurface strata of the watershed using a geographic information system. These data include mined coal regions and historical aerial photographs from the 1937-42 eras that were then layered over Pennsylvania’s historical industrial mineral mining data. This effort will allow comprehensive analysis of the contemporary shale gas activities, including a characterization of environmental hazards to local landowners. Fundamentally, depicting underground activity in the region will allow a clearer understanding of potential risks arising from shale gas extraction activities.