NPR’s StateImpact Pennsylvania is only too happy to bring us the breathless news of who the baddest of the bad were in the Marcellus drilling industry in PA for 2013. How do they measure who was naughty and who was nice? Well, they’re all naughty (right?), but the naughtiest were those who paid the biggest fines last year. It may surprise you to know that the when you add all fines together, the company paying the most in 2013 was Williams, a pipeline operator–not a driller. Williams settled up in 2013 for violations going back several years, mostly related to accidents and drilling mud spills that resulted from foul weather (including Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee). Williams’ total fine tab in 2013 was $388,694 (for violations occurring in 2011-2012). Coming in at #2 was National Fuel Gas Company’s Seneca Resources subsidiary. They were clipped $377,000 for violations occurring from 2010 to 2013.
Below are the top 5 violators cumulatively (adding up all of their violations), along with the top 5 biggest single violations from last year, in the PA Marcellus drilling industry: