Opponents appeal decision to allow drilling under Ohio state parks and wildlife areas

BY: - December 11, 2023

Environmental groups filed an appeal earlier this month challenging recent decisions by an Ohio regulatory commission to allow drilling under a state park and two state wildlife areas. Those decisions currently call for sections of Salt Fork State Park, Zepernick Wildlife Area and Valley Run Wildlife Area to be leased to the highest and best […]

Ohio oil and gas industry accident data boost worries about drilling under state parks

BY: - October 25, 2023

Public records show Ohio regulators log hundreds of incidents each year dealing with chemical releases related to the oil and gas industry. Such events raise critics’ concerns about plans to drill for oil and gas under state-owned parks and wildlife areas. While most problems happen at rigs and wellheads, which will be outside the parks, […]

Photo by Paul Becker provided by Save Ohio Parks.

Ohio Oil and Gas Land Management Commission can – and should – deny fracking in our public lands

BY: - September 27, 2023

By Cathy Cowan Becker, Roxanne Groff, Loraine McCosker, Jenny Morgan, Randi Pokladnik, and Melinda Zemper of Save Ohio Parks Ohio’s Oil and Gas Land Management Commission met Sept. 18 to discuss the fate of our beloved state parks, wildlife areas, and public lands. At issue were nine applications, called “lease nominations,” by unidentified oil and […]

‘Falsified’ public comments loom over Ohio state parks drilling decisions

BY: - September 20, 2023

An Ohio commission is poised to rule on proposals to drill under state parks and wildlife areas before the conclusion of an investigation into fabricated public comments submitted in favor of the proposals. The Ohio Oil and Gas Land Management Commission deferred a decision Monday in order to allow more time to consider the lease […]

Study: Shale gas boom ‘failed to deliver’ prosperity for Appalachia

BY: - August 24, 2023

A new study shows Appalachian regions counting on shale gas to replace losses from the steel industry are seeing discouraging results that researchers say show an unlikely future for the field. The Ohio River Valley Institute, a Pennsylvania-based think tank, used U.S. Energy Information Administration data, along with natural gas output statistics to look at […]

Ohio commission considers state park drilling requests under expedited timeline

BY: - July 18, 2023

A state commission will soon decide whether to greenlight drilling for natural gas under Ohio state parks, wildlife areas, and other state-owned lands. Ohio’s Oil & Gas Land Management Commission is currently considering a dozen applications to extract natural gas from state property under new rules adopted pursuant to a state law that requires it […]

Environmental experts warn fracking on state lands in Ohio is dangerous, economically dubious

BY: - June 29, 2023

The Ohio Oil and Gas Land Management Commission heard from three environmentally-minded experts Wednesday skeptical of opening state lands to exploration. They argued the industry is downplaying risks and the strain on resources while offering an overly optimistic outlook. Silverio Caggiano spends a lot of time thinking about worst case scenarios. The retired Youngstown Fire […]

Bidding begins for oil and gas leases on public land in Ohio

BY: - June 2, 2023

The commission in charge of leasing mineral rights on state land in Ohio has begun accepting applications. They’ve already received eight proposals, and the commission plans to post the applications once they’ve reviewed them. Lawmakers set up the Oil and Gas Land Management Commission more than a decade ago. They charged the five-member commission with […]

Oil and gas drilling in state parks set to expand, while some say taxes on it are too low

BY: - April 21, 2023

Energy companies, lawmakers, and environmental groups are again arguing over the companies’ ability to drill for oil and gas in Ohio state parks.  And as they battle over the firms’ ability to drill for profits on taxpayer-owned land intended for recreation and conservation, it raises another question that isn’t exactly new: Are the companies paying […]

Environmentalists fear Lake Erie fracking, oil and gas industry says not to worry

BY: - April 3, 2023

The following article was originally published on and is published in the Ohio Capital Journal under a content-sharing agreement. Unlike other OCJ articles, it is not available for free republication by other news outlets as it is owned by WEWS in Cleveland.   A bill introduced to the Ohio House would prevent oil and natural […]

Commission advances rules, leasing forms for drilling on Ohio’s state lands

BY: - February 2, 2023

Environmentalists demanded public input and oversight before oil and gas companies gain clearance to drill on public lands. The five-member oil and gas land management commission heard public comment Wednesday before approving a new standard lease form and rules. The process to lease public lands for oil and gas exploration has been exceptionally slow. Lawmakers […]

Ohio’s ‘Frackgate’ controversy predicted backlash to drilling under state parks

BY: - December 15, 2022

Barkcamp State Park is among the few places where visitors can experience Ohio’s forests as they existed before European settlement. Once the site of a historic logging camp, today it’s a destination for camping, fishing, and other outdoor recreation. It’s also a place that could see new pressure for oil and gas development after Ohio […]