Friday, January 15, 2010

Exco Resources ordered to stop Marcellus shale drilling

This is a reposting of a timely article.

Jan 13, 2010
Eric Watkins
OGJ Oil Diplomacy Editor

" LOS ANGELES, Jan. 13 -- Exco Resources Inc., Dallas—the first company permitted in an eastern Pennsylvania county to drill for natural gas on the Marcellus shale formation—has been ordered to cease operations.

According to Greenfield Township in Lackawanna County, Exco violated a local zoning ordinance. State regulators last summer gave the company a permit to drill near the Skyline Public Golf Course, which is zoned for commercial recreation.

But Township supervisor Joseph Slebodnik has since said drilling for gas is not allowed in that area. Exco has 30 days to appeal the violation notice to the township's zoning hearing board.

Exco Chief Operating Officer Hal Hickey said the company will continue working with the township and will ensure the firm is in full compliance with "all governing jurisdictions."

Last July, Exco said it received the permit from state regulators to drill two sites near the Skyline Public Golf Course in Greenfield Township.

According to reports, the golf course was part of a collectively negotiated gas lease of 25,000 acres that Exco bought for $2,100/acre and an 18% production royalty.

The award came after Pennsylvania’s Department of Environmental Protection issued a statement in April in support of drilling for gas in the Marcellus shale, noting that “the Commonwealth fully supports these activities and the development of the Marcellus play.”

Since then, however, environmental activists have been stepping up pressure on Pennsylvania officials to discontinue drilling for gas in the state’s Marcellus shale areas.

In December, the activist PennEnvironment organization pressured public officials with a report outlining what it called “the most urgent and widespread” environmental and public health concerns associated with Marcellus Shale gas drilling in the state.

“Our elected officials are going to have to make a decision: are they going to protect the public’s health, or are they going to put polluter profits ahead of the health of the Commonwealth’s citizens and environment?” said said Erika Staaf, Clean Water Advocate with PennEnvironment.

Contact Eric Watkins at"

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Green Building Training and Certification Program

B.F. Environmental Consultants Inc. of Dallas, Pennsylvania has collaborated with online training centers to make available quality distance learning courses in alternative and renewable energy, alternative energy training, energy efficiency, Green Building Design, and Sustainability Analysis. This program is part of our workforce development and green career training programs.

Green jobs have been growing rapidly in the US. According to a recent report by the Pew Charitable Trust, green jobs have increased by over 9% a year since 2000, compared just 3% for the overall economy. This trend is expected to continue as spending on new green construction and on green renovation is expected to double over the next 5 years. Those whose jobs include building, maintaining or selling residential or commercial properties are well advised to get training on green techniques in order to be prepared for the changes that are coming. These programs are part of our workforce development efforts and training/outreach programs for professionals, planners, and government officials.
These course can help to train future professionals and contractors in the following areas:

1. Describe Green Building Principles and Practices.
2. Discuss Green Energy Management and Optimization.
3. Explain Sustainable Design Concepts.
4. Implement Green Building Design Principles.
5. Describe Green Construction Techniques.
6. Choose Certification Options for both Individuals and the Organization.
7. Begin Preparing Energy Audits.

This course concludes with information on testing, certification, and accreditation, including a look at the LEED program, BPI Program, and the NAHB Green Home Certification Program.

The new website for the Program is Green Building Training.

Sustainability Training and Certification Program

B.F. Environmental Consultants Inc has partnered with leading educator to provide a Senior Certified Sustainability Professional. After completing this premier certification program, you will establish yourself as a sustainable business professional ready to take responsibility for setting the direction and coordinating an enterprise’s sustainability strategy across multiple functional areas such as sales, marketing, communications, new product development, global supply chain, operations, and corporate social responsibility.

This program is intended for professionals working in or preparing for leadership roles tasked to support the sustainable business practices and goals of their organization. Professionals who need to create collaborative partnerships with management in order to improve sustainable business practices. Sustainability consultants who must analyze “green” challenges for their clients and develop multi-faceted solutions. Managers and professionals whose departments are evolving on their sustainability journey, and have responsibility for linking business needs to performance interventions, including sustainable business practices.

The objectives of this program will aid students in:

1. Establishing and maintaining a green procurement strategy.

2. Apply the principles of environmentally preferred purchasing, design for environment, eco-control systems, and sustainable business practices.

3. Develop and Indentify Corporate Social Responsibility strategies to meet organizational needs.
4. Develop and use Environmental Management System (EMS) practices.

5. Improve product positioning using the green marketing mix principles.

6. Organize and sequence carbon strategies using the World Resource Institute protocol.

7. Improve operational sustainability through greening the logistics and supply chain.

The following is an outline of the program:

I. Green Purchasing Fundamentals -Introduction to Green Procurement
II. Sustainability 101: Corporate Social Responsibility
III. Carbon Strategies: Developing a Carbon Policy
IV. Environmental Management Systems - EMS (ISO 14001)
V. Environmental Accounting 101
VI. Green Marketing & Sales Force Essentials
VII. Green Transportation: 12 Best Practices
VIII. Sustainability Leader - Defining the Performance Requirements
IX. Advanced Green Purchasing- Alternative Materials
X. The Sustainability Consultant- Green Consulting 101

For more information on this program - go to Sustainability Professional Certificate Program