PA Court Rules to Allow More Leasing/Drilling of State-Owned Land

In a crushing blow to the litigious anti-drilling group Pennsylvania Environmental Defense Foundation (PEDF), the PA Commonwealth Court ruled yesterday against the PEDF’s lawsuit that attempts to stop all drilling and leasing of state-owned lands for oil and gas drilling. The court said a) such drilling is just fine and b) the decision of whether or not to allow drilling on state-owned lands (and which parcels) rests with the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. The court further said that the General Assembly can decide how the monies received from leasing and production royalties will be spent–even as part of the general budget (former Gov. Ed Rendell leased hundreds of thousands of acres so he could use the money to prop up his failing budgets). It was a clean sweep. The PEDF lost all of their points in the lawsuit. The downer is that incoming Gov. Tom Wolf has said he won’t lease any more state lands for drilling…

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