New Wastewater Treatment Plant Approved in Central PA

Narrowsburg, NY – The River Reporter (Feb 25)
‘Unauthorized’ wastewater hearing brings flowback feedback

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has granted its first permit to a wastewater treatment facility since new, stricter guidelines were recently implemented. From The River Reporter article:

The DEP has issued its first new permit for treating drilling wastewater to TerrAqua Resource Management LLC of Williamsport, allowing the company to treat and discharge 400,000 gallons per day of gas well drilling wastewater into the West Branch Susquehanna River Watershed.

According to the DEP, the permit requires TerrAqua to meet the proposed new regulatory standards of 500 parts per million for total dissolved solids (TDS) and 250 parts per million for chlorides and sulfates. TerrAqua has indicated that it will pursue a thermal treatment process capable of reducing TDS levels to less than 500 parts per million at all times.

The discharge permit also requires TerrAqua to monitor for radioactivity, a large number of metals, including barium, strontium, iron, manganese and aluminum, as well as organics such as toluene, benzene, phenols, ethylene glycol and surfactants.