Website mines Marcellus data
WILKES-BARRE — Marcellus shale exploration produces gas, money, controversy and happy statisticians.
The thicket of data tracking Pennsylvania's drilling surge is compiled and stored by different federal and state agencies in various places online and on paper. A Susquehanna County-based website aims to merge it and present it in a meaningful way.
Carl Hagstrom founded MarcellusGas.Org in mid-2010 after conducting his own frustrating search for relevant information about the gas extraction boom around his Jessup Township home and business. Pieces of data were available across “two dozen” places online, he found, but it was “really, really tedious” to find and required a fairly high level of computer skills “and patience.”
“If I could find the information in the manner that I wanted to see it, then I thought there would probably be other people that felt the same way,” Hagstrom said.
The website is designed for people who own property in Pennsylvania or are interested in researching gas-related information about a parcel, like real estate agents or investors. It is ad-free and strives for objectivity.
Hagstrom said he has found that certain information is coveted.
“For every two people that are interested in the non-monetary aspects of the information,” he said, “there are eight that are interested in the money.”
He had experience with web development from his partnership in Woodweb, an industrial woodworking site that has been running for more than a decade.
MarcellusGas.Org is a subscription site that costs $20 annually for full access. A free guest membership offers a limited number of views.
The data is primarily arranged by well site.
The copied documents come from in-person visits Hagstrom or one of the other five people who work on the site make to a regional Department of Environmental Protection office in Williamsport. In early December, the site had nearly 10,000 maps available for download.
MarcellusGas.Org graphs, maps and packages searchable databases in dozens of ways by county, company, township and state. In all, the site pulls together about 2 million separate pieces of data and adds more each week, Hagstrom said.
It's “a real challenge, and what I think we're doing fairly well is presenting that deluge of data in a way that makes sense,” he said.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Fallout from child protection law felt in Pa. churches, libraries, fields
- Lawrence power plant being converted to gas from coal
- Medical pot has advocate in Pennsylvania House
- Evidence for charge not found in Pa. case
- Pa. man gets life in prison for girlfriend’s ‘obscene’ slaying
- Pennsylvania Senator Casey pushes for railroad bridge inspectors
- 2001 same-sex union recognized despite partner’s death