Marcellus Shale

The Marcellus Shale: The Science Beneath the Surface


We are holding a workshop on April 26 entitled I want to teach about hydrofracking, but I don't know where to start!.

More information and online registration is available here.

What is the Marcellus Shale?

The Marcellus Shale is an organic-rich layer of rock extending deep underground from Ohio and West Virginia northeast into Pennsylvania and southern New York. It has long been known that the Marcellus Shale holds a substantial quantity of natural gas; recent technological advances have made recovering gas from these deposits economically attractive to natural gas companies, but with numerous potential environmental impacts both local and global. The aim of this website is to provide introductory information on the geology and extraction of gas from the Marcellus Shale, on the associated environmental risks, and on the broader energy context of the issues.


If you have feedback about the book Science Beneath the Surface, please use our Feedback form. If you have a question about another aspect of PRI’s Marcellus Shale outreach program, please contact

If you have a question about setting up an interview with the authors, press materials, or anything similarly related, please contact Andrew Matthiessen at

The Marcellus Shale and major river basins in New York. The Marcellus Shale underlies nine river basins in New York State. The Marcellus fairway underlies five basins.