As part of the process to enact new drilling regulations in New York State, Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Joe Martens appointed a Hydraulic Fracturing Advisory Panel last July to make recommendations to the DEC on how to oversee, monitor and enforce new shale drilling regulations in the state (see this MDN story for background). An important part of the panel’s duty is to craft a new fee structure to generate state revenue from a potential gas-drilling boom. But the work of the panel has now ground to halt.
Pennsylvania legislators in both the PA House and Senate have debated for months on passage of new Marcellus drilling legislation. The main sticking point has been a local impact fee. Last week, Gov. Tom Corbett, a Republican now in his second year in office, sent the Republican-controlled legislature a “hurry up and get it done” letter. Legislators were busy finalizing details over the weekend and a plan has now emerged. Likely to be voted on this week, the plan calls for the amount of the fee to vary depending on the rate of inflation and the commodity price of natural gas.
Binghamton, NY’s anti-drilling mayor, Matt Ryan, is hard at work on the city’s top priority. There’s the mundane “usual stuff” a mayor does. You know, trying to attract new business to the area, generate jobs, lower taxes, ensure the city attracts more welfare recipients…all of the things you would expect from a hard-working mayor like Matt. But then there’s the “top priority” really really important stuff that takes up the majority of this great man’s time. Like organizing anti-fracking concerts featuring singers you’ve never heard of. Yessiree, that’s good ole Matt hard at work, doing the people’s business:
For years, the Keystone Sanitary Landfill, a privately owned and operated municipal solid waste landfill located in Dunmore, PA (a Scranton suburb) has accepted already-processed cuttings, or rock waste, from Marcellus Shale drillers. The landfill filed a permit application in December with the state Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) that would allow it to accept unprocessed cuttings—cuttings in a non-solid form—and mix it with a lime-based material to solidify it. The process of mixing it is called milling.
The landfill uses milled cuttings as a soil replacement to cover the landfill at the end of each day.
Unfortunately, it looks like Virginia is joining Maryland in hanging out the “do not drill here” sign for Marcellus Shale gas drillers.
The “best of the rest” – stories that caught MDN’s eye that you may be interested in reading: