Watershed Specialist Shares Pointers With Local Group

Potter County Today

watermonitorWatershed Specialist Erica Tomlinson shared information about monitoring waterways for adverse impacts from natural gas drilling during a meeting held Tuesday with members of two Potter County Natural Gas Task Force study committees. Tomlinson serves in an official capacity for the Tioga County Conservation District and volunteers with the Pine Creek Headwaters Protection Group.

More than 100 people have been trained as “water dogs” by the Pine Creek group. They volunteer their time to take samples from public waterways and log the results. Tomlinson pointed out that sources other than gas drilling have the potential to foul public waterways, including erosion/sedimentation and agricultural practices. She added that, by and large, results from monitoring of Pine Creek and its tributaries have not revealed adverse impact from the gas industry. However, Tomlinson said she has heard anecdotal evidence of problems with privately owned wells and springs as well as retention ponds.

God’s Country Chapter of Trout Unlimited and local watershed associations have been training volunteers and implementing a similar water monitoring program in Potter County. More information will be shared at the Nov. 9 meeting of the Potter County Natural Gas Task Force (7 pm).

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