PA Board Adopts New Drilling Regs, PIOGA Blasts DEP “Deceptive”

PA DEPYesterday the Pennsylvania Environmental Quality Board (EQB) approved “sweeping” new changes to the regulations governing oil and gas drilling in the state (for a copy of what was passed, see PA DEP Issues “Final” New Drilling Regulations; Industry Pushback). In the end the vote came down 15-4 to pass the onerous new regulations which, according to the Marcellus Shale Coalition, will cost the industry $2 billion per year without any corresponding safety improvements for the general public. The interesting thing is that two advisory boards appointed by Gov. Wolf and Dept. of Environmental Protection PennFuture Secretary John Quigley–the Conventional Oil and Gas Advisory Committee and the Technical Advisory Board (for unconventional)–came out against the new regulations. What does that tell you? A previous version of the new regs was ready to go at the end of 2014 and then Gov. Wolf won election, installed a radical environmentalist to run the DEP (Quigley) and promptly changed the rules to damage to the drilling industry–both conventional and unconventional. These new regs are the result. The Pennsylvania Independent Oil & Gas Association (PIOGA) minces no words by saying, “The four-year process of developing these regulations has been an exercise in deception, misinformation and disregard of the law by the Department of Environmental Protection that escalated under Gov. Wolf.” Below is a look at the sausage making behind the new rules, and industry’s response…

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