A partnership among Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine, Keystone College, King's College, Lackawanna College, Luzerne County Community College, Marywood University, Misericordia University, Penn State Wilkes-Barre, Penn State Worthington Scranton, The Wright Center, University of Scranton, and Wilkes University.


Marcellus Shale

Marcellus Shale is found deep underground in many counties in northeastern Pennsylvania. This shale captures natural gas and can be extracted
from the ground and used as a new source of energy. Many landowners have already leased their property to natural gas companies. Natural gas companies are securing drilling permits and drilling has or will commence in many counties in the region. This new industry has the capability of producing rapid population increases, wealthier communities, and more jobs. However, with incredible opportunities comes many challenges. How do we protect our land and environment for the next 20-30 years during drilling? How do our communities handle population growth in schools, delivering public services and public safety? What is the impact on healthcare? Will our charities and local foundations benefit? How does this impact traffic congestion as well as the physical impact on infrastructure?

Many questions still need to be answered. The Institute begins that process here. The Institute began investigating Marcellus Shale during the first quarter of 2008 and held the first Marcellus workshop in the state in 2008. The early studies and copies of the presentations of the speakers are presented below. After this initial work, The Institute was commissioned to complete several research projects on on Marcellus Shale. These studies deal with economic impact, economic and workforce development, and the impact on charities, foundations, and public safety. In addition, through funding from the Appalachian Regional Commission, The Institute embarked on a year long study with Penn State to study household perceptions and conduct field research in multiple Pennsylvania, Texas, and Arkansas counties. ARC commissioned a second study on housing and this was completed in 2011. All the research is presented below.

There are many questions yet to be answered and The Institute has the ability and resources to conduct that research.

Marcellus Shale Studies
Click on the links below.

A Review of Changes in Selected Economic & Demographic Indicators in Particular Counties in the Barnett, Fayetteville and Marcellus Shale Play
October 2012: This study is an update to our 2008 primer on Marcellus Shale which summarizes selected economic and demographic changes in other shale rich states and compares them to Pennsylvania 10th Congressional District.

History, Consumption & Uses of Natural Gas
April 2012: This white paper presents a brief history of natural gas, consumption patterns, and uses of natural gas. Case studies from communities transitioning fleets to compressed natural gas vehicles and funding are also presented.

Executive Summary: Housing & Marcellus Shale
December 2011: The study, funded by the Appalachian Regional Commission, evaluates housing in 12 Pennsylvania counties in the Marcellus Shale play in order to identify trends impacting the cost and availability of housing at different price points. This document is a detailed Executive Summary from the study.

Housing & Marcellus Shale
November 2011: This study, evaluates housing in 12 Pennsylvania counties in the Marcellus Shale play in order to identify trends impacting the cost and availability of housing at different price points. The study was funded by the Appalachian Regional Commission.

As a result of the study, The Institute developed three briefs focusing on issues uncovered as a result of the study.

Housing Policy
December 2011: This is a policy statement focusing on housing policy reform.

Issue Brief: Social Services
December 2011: This brief describes resulting social service issues.
Issue Brief: Vouchers
December 2011: This brief describes the issues with housing vouchers.
Issue Brief: Real Estate
December 2011: This brief describes challenges in the real estate market.

Pennsylvania Perceptions about Marcellus Shale - part 3
October 2011: This report demonstrates the differences Pennsylvanian's have in their perceived knowledge and attitudes regarding Marcellus Shale. Data came from the Baseline Socioeconomic Analysis produced in fall 2011.

Pennsylvania Perceptions about Marcellus Shale - part 2
June 2011: The Pennsylvania Respondents Characteristics report provides a brief synopsis of the survey respondents' socio-economic status in relation to their survey responses. Baseline Socioeconomic Analysis produced in fall 2010.

Presentation to Governor Corbett's Marcellus Shale Advisory Commission

March 2011: The Institute was invited to present its research at the inaugural meeting of the commission. The research was completed through funding from the Appalachian Regional Commission and with collaborators from Penn State University.
Pennsylvania Perceptions about Marcellus Shale
February 2011: The Pennsylvania perceptions report provides a brief synopsis of the survey of residents conducted for the Baseline Socioeconomic Analysis produced in fall 2010. This short white paper summarizes the responses of the 1450+ survey respondents with regard to their attitudes and perceptions about Marcellus Shale.

Baseline Socioeconomic Analysis for the Marcellus Shale Development
September 2010: The purpose of this project was to assess the current social and economic conditions relating to gas well development in
the Marcellus Shale formation in Pennsylvania, with the goal of obtaining baseline data for future longitudinal assessments that occur in Appalachian
counties. The study was funded by the Appalachia Regional Commission. The study includes: 1) A Survey of Residents residing in the Marcellus
Region. A mail survey of a sample of households within selected Appalachian counties in the Marcellus Shale region in Pennsylvania was carried
out to ascertain current views of residents concerning gas industry development in their areas and to obtain information about their perceptions of
their communities. 2) Interviews with Key Informants. Interviews of approximately 60 stakeholders from public, private, nonprofit, and institutions
were conducted in Pennsylvania, Texas, and Arkansas to ascertain their perceptions of current and future economic, social, and environmental
impacts associated with large scale natural gas development.

Economic and Workforce Development Study - Marcellus Shale
January 2010: A new industry in Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has the opportunity to bring new jobs and new businesses. This study
addresses the changes in jobs, industries, and wages that have occurred in four other states engaged in shale drilling. The analysis was completed to
evaluate changes in core shale counties as well as adjacent counties. In addition, the career ladder of the drilling industry is explained as well as
education and training from the secondary level to continuing education and on-the-job training.

The Impact of Marcellus Shale in Northeastern Pennsylvania with Emphasis on Charities, Crime, and Poverty
June 2008: A new energy source is the next catalytic event propelling northeastern Pennsylvania into growth mode.

A Primer on Marcellus Shale
May 2008: An introduction to Marcellus Shale and the economic impact on the region using a case study methodology from events in Texas
and Arkansas.

Marcellus Shale Symposium --- November 19, 2008 click on the links below for copies of the presentations by our speakers

A History & Overview of the Barnett Shale
November 19, 2008: Will Bracket, Powell Barnett Shale Newsletter.

Lessons Learned from the North Texas Barnett Shale
November 19, 2008: John Baen, Ph.D., University of North Texas

Marcellus Shale Development
November 19, 2008: Matt Sheppard, Chesapeake Energy

All research published prior to November 2008 is published under our original name: Joint Urban Studies Center (JUSC).