South Fayette, PA Gets First Marcellus Permit Application

South Fayette township in Allegheny County, PA (near Pittsburgh) is one of seven PA towns that sued the state after the Act 13 law was enacted last year, in 2012 (see Lawsuit Filed: PA Towns Sue State over Marcellus Act 13 Law). Their beef? Act 13 took away the right of local municipalities like South Fayette to apply their own zoning rules to oil and gas drilling. Act 13 substituted a statewide uniform standard, replacing a patchwork crazy quilt situation where each town did something different. The state says their rules are uniform, strict and fair–developed by people who know what they’re doing in the complex business of oil and gas drilling. The towns say they know their own towns best and where a well should and should not be drilled. A final outcome to the case is still pending before the PA Supreme Court (see Should the Full 7-Member PA Supreme Court Re-Hear Act 13 Case?).

During the appeals process, South Fayette developed a bit of a persecution complex (see South Fayette, PA Accuses PUC of Persecuting Them over Act 13). The town has been very effective in shutting out drilling (dare we say they’re anti-drilling?). According to MDN’s own Marcellus and Utica Shale Databook series, South Fayette has had zero drilling permit applications filed from at least 2011 to the present. That is, until now…

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