Geologist to SEPA: Marsh Creek Lake Incident Doesn’t Meet the Hysteria Pushed by Some

With ongoing protests related to the Mariner East pipeline, it is refreshing to have insights offered by real experts, not anti-pipeline zealots. Anti-pipeliners have spent the past two weeks pushing unfounded theories, including reckless attempts to scare local residents about the safety of their drinking water.

Unlike the activists, Bill Godsey has actual experience in pipeline infrastructure development. His company, Geo Logic Environmental Services, focuses on the many aspects of environmental protection that accompany pipeline development.

Godsey penned a piece in the Delaware Valley Journal questioning the antics of pipeline protesters in SEPA, asking: “If you claim the water’s not safe then why go paddling in it… with your kids?” Godsey dispels much of the anti-pipeline rhetoric that SEPA news outlets have run with, including quotes and commentary from activists without any credentials or experience to provide a foundational understanding of the facts at hand.

 “Inadvertent returns, which is the incident that occurred, happen when drilling mud — made up of water and non-toxic bentonite used to cool the drill — get into the cracks and fissures in the ground and escape the drill hole. In an ideal world, this mud would be contained within the drill hole, but depending on the soils, geology and topography of certain areas some will undoubtedly escape. Because it is widely acknowledged that inadvertent returns will occur, the drilling mud is entirely made of non-harmful, naturally occurring materials.”

Importantly, Godsey fact checked a claim that drilling mud includes proprietary “chemical additives,” correcting that assertion:

One news story I read included a quote by someone with one of the deep-pocketed environmental groups saying that they believe there are “chemical additives” mixed in. Let me be clear, that is false and disregards the strict regulatory oversight that goes into every aspect of pipeline construction, which includes the ingredients used in drilling mud

He continued:

Environmentalists also missed the mark when they were reporting that water sources were impacted. As many of us have hopefully learned during what has been the COVID-19 pandemic, science matters and such reckless comments are good for only one thing — mass hysteria. What’s worse is that the media, in some instances, has provided the microphone to spread the false information.

Click here to read the OpEd in its entirety.

Godsey is correct that the level of hysterics by these few activists is very unfortunate. The misinformation they push is equivalent to a fire at the hip and ask questions later form of strategy. It’s dangerous to say the least. What makes matters worse is the microphone with which much of the media provides them.

Semblance of reality is absolutely necessary, which Bill Godsey’s OpEd provides.