Webinar: A Decade of Environmental & Regulatory Progress in the Natural Gas Industry – August 26, 2020

Pittsburgh, PA – Cabot Oil & Gas Corporation, in cooperation with Marcellus Drilling News and Natural Gas Now hosted a Think About Energy Briefing webinar on Wednesday August 26, 2020.

Today’s webinar featured Patrick Henderson of the Marcellus Shale Coalition, Kathryn Klaber of the Klaber Group and Joseph Reinhart of Babst Calland.

The webinar provided attendees with a look back at the environmental and regulatory progress that has occurred since the shale industry started in earnest over a decade ago. Panelists discussed the numerous legislative, regulatory and best management practices that have evolved through cooperation and respect for the communities and environment in which the industry operates.

George Stark, Director, External Affairs, Cabot Oil & Gas Corporation, moderated today’s discussion. “We are fortunate to have panelists who have been involved in the shale industry for more than a decade in the Commonwealth. In each of their respective roles, they all had one common goal – how can we get this done the right way. The industry has made tremendous strides over the past decade and this would not have happened without the expertise of panelists like we have today,” said Stark.

Patrick Henderson, Director of Regulatory Affairs for the Marcellus Shale Coalition, focused on the environmental improvements in Pennsylvania and their impact on the quality of life.

“We’ve made terrific progress over the past decade in Pennsylvania, and because of safe and responsible natural gas development, our environment is better protected and our air quality is dramatically improved,” said Henderson. “Pennsylvania has among the highest of environmental standards for ensuring that natural gas is developed safely and responsibly, and our state Department of environmental Protections own data demonstrates that natural gas operators have among the highest environmental compliance rates of any industry in the Commonwealth.”

Henderson highlighted the shale industry’s commitment to getting it right from an environmental perspective.

“Industry has been at the forefront in demanding excellence in its operations and among its peers. Their employees are members of our local community, and they are rightfully proud of the many significant contributions they have made within their communities,” said Henderson. “Let there be no question: the safe and responsible development of Pennsylvania’s domestic natural gas resources has enhanced our environment; created job opportunities for those in need; strengthened our national security; and helped to elevate our Commonwealth as a leader on the world stage,” concluded Henderson.

Kathryn Klaber, managing partner of the Klaber Group, discussed the industry’s role during the early days of shale development and the involvement of the Marcellus Shale Coalition in the process.

“The early days in the Marcellus were all about earning the license to operate – achieved through authentic outreach to the many stakeholders who were quickly learning about our industry,” said Klaber.

Ms. Klaber helped to organize and served as the inaugural president of the Marcellus Shale Coalition. She discussed the member led approach to public outreach to a variety of stakeholders.

“Of the many proactive actions taken by the industry in the early years, none were to have as far reaching an impact as the many Recommended Practices, developed by the industry and shared with the public,” said Klaber. “The ability for the incredibly diverse companies across the industry to come together, identify priorities & work together to drive consensus on various topics was a monumental task. We then took those topics and created a unified outreach to partners & regulators.”

Joseph Reinhart, Co-Chair of the Environmental, Energy and Natural Resource Groups at Babst Calland, highlighted the regulatory changes as a result of shale development.

“Act 13 of 2012 expanded the existing reporting standards including tracking of waste water & air emissions data that operators are required to provide on an ongoing basis,” said Reinhart. “Operators are now required to report their completion fluids through the chemical disclosure registry Frac Focus.”

Reinhart went on to discuss the external influences and their impact on the progress of the shale industry.

“This past decade has clearly demonstrated the energy industry’s resiliency in the midst of price fluctuations, increased regulation, NGO opposition and policy changes, let alone the current pandemic and economic slowdown,” said Reinhart. “The industry has increased efficiencies even as lower commodity pricing squeezed margins, while at the same time seeking new markets.” Concluding his remarks, Reinhart discussed the midstream development as there are still areas across the United States that are lacking adequate supply. “Transportation options for moving natural resources from growing areas of production to customers continue to be built, even with new hurdles from regulators and other stakeholders.”


  • Patrick Henderson
  • Patrick Henderson

    As a member of the Government Affairs team, Henderson assists the members of the Marcellus Shale Coalition in navigating a host of important public policy issues which affect the safe and responsible development of shale gas resources. The Marcellus Shale Coalition is the largest advocacy organization representing operators and affiliated companies involved in the development of natural gas in the Commonwealth.

    Prior to this role, Henderson served as Deputy Chief of Staff and Energy Executive for Governor Tom Corbett. As Deputy Chief of Staff, Henderson served as the primary liaison to the Governor’s Office for nearly a dozen Cabinet-level Executive state agencies. Henderson was a senior advisor on energy policy; partnering with state agencies to coordinate a cohesive energy strategy that reflects Governor Corbett’s vision for energy; and worked with citizens and stakeholders on advancing sound energy policies in the Commonwealth. He led the effort to publish Pennsylvania’s first ever State Energy Plan, published in January 2014.
    Before serving on Governor Corbett’s Executive Staff, Henderson spent 14 years on staff in the state Senate. From January 1999 through January 18, 2011, Henderson served as the Executive Director of the Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committee. During this time, he helped craft laws such as Growing Greener, the Water Resources Planning Act, the Alternative Energy Portfolio Standards Act, the Dormant Oil and Gas Act, the Alternative Energy Investment Act, The Coal Mine Safety Act and others.

    Henderson served on Governor Corbett’s Marcellus Shale Advisory Commission, charged with crafting a comprehensive and strategic plan for the safe and responsible development of Marcellus Shale in Pennsylvania. He also helped craft and seek enactment of Act 13 of 2012, the comprehensive Marcellus Shale law which updated the state’s oil and gas statutes for the first time in nearly three decades. He is also a member of the Pennsylvania Climate Change Advisory Committee.

    Henderson is a 1996 graduate of Bloomsburg University with a B.A. in Political Science. He resides in Lower Paxton Township, Dauphin County with his wife and two children.

  • Kathryn Klaber
  • Kathryn Klaber

    Kathryn Klaber leads The Klaber Group, providing strategic services to businesses and other institutions as they capitalize on shale development in the United States and abroad.  Ms. Klaber’s career-long experience in energy, economic and environmental issues at the confluence of the private and public sectors brings new perspectives, strategies and implementation to the clients of The Klaber Group.  Examples of The Klaber Group’s engagements include:

    • Leadership team member responsible for all public affairs and community engagement for multi-state pipeline
    • Strategic communication and economic impact analyses to facilitate permitting for multi-state pipeline client
    • Social and economic impact analyses to support major petrochemical development project
    • Political and regulatory decision tool development for E&P company in planning well development program
    • Creation and leadership of TriState Infrastructure Council, prioritizing public-private development needs and opportunities in the Ohio River Valley
    • United Kingdom-based client work for E&P and supply chain clients on emerging shale development and the technical, regulatory and public affairs framework needed for success
    • Market research and business development support for former coal-fired electric generation site, global water management company, multi-state law firm, global environmental consulting firm and leading international management consulting firm
    • Technology and market evaluation for private equity clients, economic development organizations and university

    Ms. Klaber launched and led the Marcellus Shale Coalition as its first CEO, growing it to be the premier regional trade association for the oil and gas industry in the northeastern United States during a high-stakes period.  On behalf of the MSC’s member companies, she worked closely with elected leaders, regulators and the civic community to advance the responsible development of the Marcellus, Utica and related shale formations.  Ms. Klaber facilitated and guided the work of an engaged board of 45 directors, an active membership from approximately 300 companies and a mobilized grassroots network.  Throughout the rapid production growth and intensive scrutiny of industry operations, Ms. Klaber helped secure the industry’s license to operate, hiring a world-class team, fostering integrity within the organization and the industry, especially on issues related to tax and regulatory policies, safety culture, technical standards and environmental protection, while bringing lasting value to her members’ businesses.

    Kathryn Klaber is a regular speaker on energy issues to major audiences, and has been a featured expert on national, state and local media, such as Fox Business, The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and Washington Post, and writes a monthly column for the Pittsburgh Business Times.  She has conducted in-depth presentations on the industry to leading groups throughout the United States, in Australia and at London’s Chatham House.

    Prior to joining the MSC, Ms. Klaber served as Executive Vice President for Competitiveness at the Allegheny Conference on Community Development and Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Economy League.  In these roles, she testified before state and federal agencies and legislative bodies on key policy issues and achieved significant regulatory and legislative outcomes.  During the first decade of her career, Ms. Klaber worked for the international environmental, health and safety consulting firm Environmental Resources Management bringing her clients reliable compliance strategies and innovative business solutions.

    Ms. Klaber earned her undergraduate degree in environmental science from Bucknell University and her Masters in Business Administration from Carnegie Mellon University, where she received the Enterprise Award for Entrepreneurship.  She serves on the Cleveland Federal Reserve’s Pittsburgh Board, the University of Pittsburgh School of Law’s Energy Law & Policy Institute, and the board of JA of Western Pennsylvania.

  • Joseph K. Reinhart
  • Joseph K. Reinhart

    Joe Reinhart is a shareholder and co-chairman of the Energy and Natural Resources Group of Babst Calland. He is also a member of the Firm’s Environmental Group. His environmental practice focuses on areas of environmental law that concern oil and gas well development, chemical plant operations, coal mining and non-coal mining. In addition, Mr. Reinhart’s practice includes the application of state and federal laws governing the disposal of produced waters and other wastes generated by gas, coal and electric utility industries. Mr. Reinhart also routinely counsels clients concerning risk-based remediation programs, such as Pennsylvania’s Act 2 Program, particularly as they relate to wastes derived from fossil fuels.

    Mr. Reinhart has more than 30 years of experience with environmental law. He has represented industrial and commercial clients in many complex permitting and enforcement matters under federal and state laws. Mr. Reinhart has negotiated consent orders with agencies to resolve liabilities associated with reclamation and remediation obligations under SMCRA, CERCLA, RCRA, the SDWA, the Pennsylvania Oil and Gas Act, the Solid Waste Management Act, the Pennsylvania Hazardous Sites Cleanup Act and the Pennsylvania Clean Streams Law. He has negotiated environmental provisions in business transactions involving coal mines, petrochemical facilities and industrial properties across the United States.

    Mr. Reinhart frequently lectures on new developments in environmental law and has provided comments on behalf of industry to agency regulatory initiatives. Beginning in 2003, and annually thereafter, he has been appointed by the secretaries of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection to the Pennsylvania Solid Waste Advisory Committee (SWAC). In addition, Mr. Reinhart is a Trustee of the Energy and Mineral Law Foundation, where he presently serves on its Law Student Scholarship Committee. He also served as co-chair of the Oil & Gas Program at the 60th Annual Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Institute in Vail, Colorado and chaired the Oil & Gas Program at the 2015 Annual Energy and Mineral Law Foundation Institute in Amelia Island, Florida.

    Mr. Reinhart earned his B.A. from the University of Notre Dame in 1981 and his J.D. from the University of Pittsburgh School of Law in 1984. From 1984–1988, he served as counsel to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Resources. Mr. Reinhart joined the law firm in 1988 and served as chairman of the Environmental Group for eight years.

  • George Stark
  • George Stark

    George Stark is the Director of External Affairs for Cabot Oil & Gas Corporation. In this role, George directs external and internal outreach including government affairs, advertising, media relations, corporate social responsibility, and
    communications campaigns. He also oversees efforts in building community relationships and furthering workforce development and natural gas utilization within the industry.

    In addition to his roles on several oil and natural gas industry organizations, George currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Pittsburgh Airport Area Chamber of Commerce and the Community Foundation of the Endless Mountains.

    He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Dickinson College and is a graduate of Leadership Pittsburgh. Prior to Cabot, George worked at Columbia Gas of Pennsylvania/Maryland for 15 years and most recently held the position of Director of External Affairs during his tenure. He lives in Wheeling, West Virginia with his wife and three daughters.