Spike in COVID Cases at Shell PA Cracker Plant Site – 39 Active

In line with a rise of COVID-19 cases in the general population throughout the state of Pennsylvania (and elsewhere), workers at the Shell ethane cracker site in Monaca, PA (near Pittsburgh) have seen a big jump in active coronavirus cases. As of yesterday, the number of active cases stood at 39. Wednesday the number was 31. Shell says most if not all of the cases are coming from offsite and onsite transmission among the 7,000 active workers is not a factor in the rising number.
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Anti Groups Ask PA to Reject Shell Cracker Air Permit Modification

Radical anti-fossil fuel groups have not given up hope they can somehow, at the last minute, block the $10 billion Shell ethane cracker plant (about a year from being completed) from ever starting up. Perhaps Biden’s “victory” has given them a little boost of irrational exuberance? In 2015 the Pennsylvania Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP) issued an air permit for the cracker plant. Shell needs to tweak the permit with new information. Antis are asking PA to deny the new tweaks, claiming Shell wants to pollute the region even more. Shell says the tweaks reflect new realities, including LOWER emissions.
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Weekly Shale Drilling Permits for PA, OH, WV: Oct. 19-23

For a second week in a row, all three M-U states issued new shale drilling permits last week. Pennsylvania issued 6 new permits, Ohio issued 5 new permits, and West Virginia issued 3 new permits.
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Weekly Shale Drilling Permits for PA, OH, WV: Oct. 5-9

Only Pennsylvania issued permits to drill new shale wells last week in the Appalachian region. Neither Ohio nor West Virginia issued any new drilling permits from Oct. 5-9. In PA, some 20 permits were issued in both the northeast and southwest parts of the state.
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Antis Organize “Nurdle Patrols” to Police Shell Cracker

A group of anti-fossil nutters who devoted themselves to blocking Marcellus/Utica drilling around the Ambridge Reservoir have turned their attention to the Shell ethane cracker plant in Beaver County. They wanted to stop the cracker from getting built, but given the plant is now 70% built and it’s a 100% guarantee it will get done and go online, the nutters have turned their attention to aggressive monitoring of the plant and the pollution, they say, that will come from it.
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2 Yrs After Explosion Revolution Pipe in Beaver Co. Begins Repairs

Energy Transfer (ET), builder and operator of the Revolution Pipeline in southwestern Pennsylvania, last week received permission from the state Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP) to reroute a section that “slipped” after record rainfall two years ago, resulting in an explosion in Beaver County.
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DOE Secretary Visits Shell PA Cracker Site, Talks Up Fossil Fuels

We love U.S. Secretary of Energy Dan Brouillette. He’s smart, articulate, and a supporter of all forms of energy, including fossil fuels. He also doesn’t suffer climate change fools well. Brouillette visited the Shell ethane cracker plant under construction in southwestern PA yesterday. He had some great things to say about petrochemicals, fracking, and (yes) even about so-called climate change.
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Shell Builds COVID Testing Lab at Cracker Site, Adds More Workers

Last week we brought you news that Shell had temporarily suspended adding back some 300 workers per week at its ethane cracker construction site in Beaver County, PA following a spike in COVID-19 coronavirus cases (see Shell Stops Adding Workers at Cracker Site After New Virus Cases). The new news is that as of today, Shell has resumed adding workers back because they’ve built their own COVID testing lab *on site* at the cracker facility. They can now get test COVID results in 4 hours instead of 4-6 days. Sometimes you just have to do it yourself.
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Shell Stops Adding Workers at Cracker Site After New Virus Cases

When the COVID-19 coronavirus hit, Shell stopped all work on its mighty cracker plant in Beaver County, PA, sending nearly 8,000 workers home in mid-March for what was thought to be “a few days to a few weeks” (see Shell Shuts Down SWPA Cracker Plant Construction re COVID-1). In early May Shell began bringing back 300 workers each week. Roughly 3,500 work on-site now. Because of a spike in new coronavirus cases among workers, Shell has temporarily stopped adding back new workers.
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3,000 Workers Back on the Job at Shell Cracker Construction Site

Shell slowly but surely continues to ramp back up the work being done at its mighty ethane cracker construction site in Beaver County, PA following a shutdown of activity due to the coronavirus pandemic. When the COVID-19 coronavirus hit in March, Shell stopped all work on the cracker plant, sending nearly 8,000 workers home in mid-March for what was thought to be “a few days to a few weeks” (see Shell Shuts Down SWPA Cracker Plant Construction re COVID-1). In early May Shell began bringing back roughly 300 workers each week. The total number of workers back on the job now stands at 3,000.
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PA DEP Accuses ET’s Revolution Pipe of 680 Violations Since Jan 1

This is getting ridiculous. Does anyone really believe that a single pipeline project already built and now getting a redo could possibly have racked up 680 “violations” during construction work over the past five months? We certainly don’t believe it. Yet that’s what the Pennsylvania Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP) alleges. Energy Transfer (ET), the builder and fixer of Revolution, has their own allegation: The DEP itself is “not in compliance with its own guidelines.” Who inspects the inspectors for compliance?
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Workers Begin Returning to Shell Cracker Plant Construction Site

Add another 300 workers returned to work at the mighty Shell ethane cracker construction site in Beaver County, PA this past Monday. This follows the lifting of a ban on construction activities by Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf. With the extra 300 workers back on the job, some 800 workers are now active at the site, just 10% of the 8,000 working on-site prior to the coronavirus pandemic lockdown.
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ET & DEP Still Squabbling over Revolution Pipe, New Violations

Energy Transfer’s Revolution Pipeline runs through Bulter, Beaver, Allegheny, and Washington counties in southwest PA. The 24-inch gathering pipeline shifted and exploded in September 2018, just as it was entering service (see Revolution Pipeline Near Pittsburgh Explodes – Home & Barn Destroyed). What happened that led to a landslide and explosion of the pipeline? ET says historic, unprecedented rain caused the problem. The Pennsylvania Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP) says ET took shortcuts and performed work without getting permission–work not up to code. The two sides squabbled until January of this year when the DEP levied a record-high $30.6 million fine (see ET Allowed to Fix/Restart Revolution Pipe…After Record $30M Fine).
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Another 200 Workers Returning to Work at Shell Cracker Site

As cases of COVID-19 coronavirus began to climb in relatively rural Beaver County, PA, local politicians pressured Shell to stop work on the mighty ethane cracker plant facility they are building in Monaca. Shell quickly complied, sending nearly 8,000 workers home in mid-March for what was thought to be “a few days to a few weeks” (see Shell Shuts Down SWPA Cracker Plant Construction re COVID-19). The company kept about 300 workers active at the site “to disinfect common areas and perform emergency repairs.”
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Shell Files for Waiver to Restart PA Cracker Work w/Fewer Workers

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf, like governors in neighboring states hit hard by the COVID-19 coronavirus, has elected to shut down all non-essential (called non-life-sustaining) businesses in the state until further notice to prevent the spread of the virus. The state issued a comprehensive list of which kinds of businesses could, and could not, continue working during the shutdown. Some 35,000 businesses on the non-life-sustaining list have requested a waiver from the state Dept. of Community and Economic Development (DCED). The DCED has so far granted 5,693 waivers, denied 8,952 requests, and ruled another 8,365 do not require a waiver because they fit the life-sustaining definition outlined in the shutdown order.
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