Gov. Kasich Signs Order Tightening Rules on Injection Wells

Ohio Gov. John Kasich signed an “emergency” executive order (EO) yesterday granting the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) authority to implement a list of new rules for proposed deep injection wells, used to dispose of drilling wastewater from Marcellus and Utica Shale drilling (a copy of the signed EO is embedded below).

The EO will expire in 90 days—enough time for the Ohio legislature to make the new rules permanent.

Ohio Gov. John Kasich on Tuesday issued an executive order that immediately enacted new state regulations on deep-injection wells used to dispose of…wastewater from oil and gas drilling.

The directive gives the Ohio Department of Natural Resources temporary authority to implement a list of rules announced after a series of Youngstown area earthquakes was tied to one such deep well.

The official order signed by Kasich says the regulations will provide the greatest degree of citizen protection possible without causing irreparable harm to an important industry.

Under the order, the chief of the division of oil and gas resources management will have authority to order preliminary tests at proposed well sites, prevent drilling where tests fail, and limit injection pressure. The state also can order installation of automatic shutoff valves and monitor for leakage.*

*Wheeling (WV) The Intelligencer/Wheeling News-Register/AP (Jul 11, 2012) – Kasich Enacts Well Rules