Abandoned wells in Pennsylvania are putting landowners at risk for drilling-induced explosions and water contamination, according to a new investigative series by our fellow StateImpact reporters in Pennsylvania. After a methane geyser erupted in the Pennsylvania countryside last year, StateImpact Pennsylvania is now looking into the dangers of abandoned, aka “orphaned,” wells in their Perilous Pathways series.
Laurie Barr lives in Pennsylvania and remembers reading those reports about the geyser earlier this year. “I thought, whoa, what the f—?” Barr recalls. “Can you imagine stepping out to shovel snow, and your whole house goes poof?” Now she’s made it her mission to find where the orphaned wells are and what danger they pose.