200 Wells Plugged

It was only four months ago that PEC joined Governor Josh Shapiro to mark the 100th orphan gas well plugged since he took office in 2023.

“We have plugged more wells in the first ten months of our administration than the Commonwealth plugged in the last six years combined,” Shapiro said at the time, “and we are just getting started.”

It’s clear today that he meant what he said.

Gov. Josh Shapiro announces 200 orphan wells capped
Left to right: Tyler Shank, Penn Mechanical; Gov. Josh Shapiro; Jessica Shirley, Interim Acting DEP Secretary; Tom Gilbert, PEC President; Rep. Timothy Bonner

Once again we were proud to stand alongside the Governor at another well site, this time in Butler County, where crews with Penn Mechanical of Indiana, PA completed the 200th capping project of the Shapiro Administration.

“This event reflects the tireless work of the Department of Environmental Protection and Governor Shapiro’s administration to maximize federal investment and help address Pennsylvania’s pollution legacies,” PEC President Tom Gilbert said. “The scale of orphaned wells across our Commonwealth serves as a reminder that there is enormous opportunity to create jobs and improve public health and safety while reducing harmful emissions. We are pleased to have the strong partnership of the governor as we all work toward these goals.”

150 years of oil and gas extraction have left a legacy of pollution from hundreds of thousands of still-uncapped wells across Pennsylvania. Not only do these orphan wells pose a safety risk to neighbors and a health risk to communities, they also emit huge volumes of climate-changing methane gas. Stopping such leaks is a crucial step toward leaving a better legacy for future generations. 

Securing that legacy will also mean following through on Governor Shapiro’s commitments to decarbonize power generation and develop the low- and zero-carbon sources that will make Pennsylvania competitive in the new clean energy economy.

PEC believes in an energy strategy that employs diverse, cost-effective technologies that will meet our clean energy goals, ensure a reliable grid, create good jobs, and protect our communities and environment. We must – and we can – get it right.