With many acres leased within Pittsburgh city limits, eight panel members attempted to put into perspective today what Marcellus Shale development will mean for this urban region. The panel was assembled at the call of Councilman Doug Shields, who said at the begining of the session that he wants to "begin to lift the curtain" on Marcellus drilling. More than 50 people showed, some of them wearing anti-Marcellus T-shirts. Chuck Christen, an official from the University of Pittsburgh Center for Healthy Environments and Communities, noted that the impact of the drilling will be recorded not only in production but also in the levels of stress of landowners, need for public safety services, concentrations of air pollutants and other environmental factors. Christen said among the biggest concerns is making sure that the cement casing that acts as a barrier between ground water and what goes into and out of the well is strong enough to handle the development and keep pollution out of fresh water acquifers. Michael Huss, public safety director for the City of Pittsburgh, said his department began coordinating its response plans for possible emergencies at drilling sites several months ago. Many potential accidents, such as spills of hazardous materials and fires, are similar to those safety officers are already trained to handle, he said. But it's the more specialized emergencies that will require cooperation and information sharing with industry, Huss said. "Any type of drilling that we would have here in the City of Pittsburgh, we would need to make sure we build a partnership with drillers," he said. Nadia Steinzor, Marcellus regional organizer for landowner advocacy group EARTHWORKS, voiced concerns that property owners were feeling confused and, at times, taken by landsmen who came around with leases but didn't explain the details of drilling in the Marcellus.