COLUMBIA GAS TRANSMISSION TO BEGIN LIMITED CLEARING
AT EIGHT GAS STORAGE WELLS
IN MOHICAN-MEMORIAL STATE FOREST
Well clearing work to begin the first week of December
reduced clearing area is result of agreement signed in February 2007
COLUMBUS, OH – As part of an agreement signed in February of this year that limits impacts of gas well maintenance clearing activities, Columbia Gas Transmission will begin work the first week of December to remove trees around eight gas storage wells located within Mohican-Memorial State Forest and Mohican State Park.
The clearing activity will be limited to already-designated gas well sites and does not include clearing along underground natural gas transmission lines. The State of Ohio and Columbia Gas continue to work towards an agreement for right-of-way maintenance along Columbia’s 13 miles of natural gas pipelines within the state forest and park.
“State forest staff will remain onsite while any clearing work is being conducted,” said Tim Humphrey, state forest manager. “In addition, Columbia Gas Transmission has submitted a detailed plan to address proper rehabilitation of impacted sites. Columbia has also hired an accredited master logger to conduct the clearing work.”
In the five-year agreement signed by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) and Columbia Gas Transmission, the c ompany agrees to limit most clearing to an area within 60 feet of the selected storage wells. In addition, Columbia and ODNR agree to the removal of trees greater than 10 inches in diameter in a zone 60 to 120 feet from each well. Columbia operates a total of 56 gas storage wells within the state forest and park.
Additional specified criteria in the agreement include:
- A provision to retain some trees in the 60 to120-foot zone by mutual agreement
- Trees down-slope from a well site, such as within the Clear Fork Gorge, will not be removed
- An extensive list of Best Management Practices will be utilized during tree clearing activities
- Any impact to recreational trails will be repaired as soon as practical
Salable logs from gas well clearing activity will be publicly auctioned. Proceeds from these sales will be used for purchasing land, or conservation easements, from willing sellers with property near or contiguous to Mohican-Memorial State Forest.
The State of Ohio began acquiring land for Mohican-Memorial State Forest in 1928. In the 1950s, the state entered into an agreement that allowed the forest to be used as an underground natural gas storage area.
ODNR manages the 4,525-acre Mohican-Memorial State Forest, as well as the separate 1,294-acre Mohican State Park and 29-acre Clear Fork Gorge State Nature Preserve.
For more news online, visit the ODNR Press Room at ohiodnr.com
For Further Information Contact:
Andy Ware, ODNR Division of Forestry
Jane Beathard, ODNR Media Relations