With the recent discovery of the Marcellus and Utica Shales in PA, OH, and WV, exploration and development has exploded. Most landowners find themselves having gas lines and / or well sites developed on their properties whether they want them there or not. But what happens to your trees?
Regardless of whether or not you own the mineral rights, you DO own the surface rights, which includes the trees. Because they control the mineral rights, the gas developers are allowed to enter your property for the gas resources, but they can't do so without fair compensation for surface disturbance.
The gas companies will compensate you for the tree value, but first you need to get an appraisal from a professional forester. They often offer a "standard value" for the length of the gas line distance or amount of acreage affected, but what if the trees are more valuable than the standard payment?
Here are photos of a 2,400 foot long gasline right-of-way cleared ON THE WRONG PROPERTY. Had they hired a forester this could have been avoided: