ME2 Pipeline Worker Charged with Falsifying Welding Records

A worker hired to x-ray welds on sections of the Mariner East 2 pipeline in southwestern Pennsylvania has been charged falsifying records, indicating that he performed the work when he didn’t. That’s a felony. According to one news account the worker, from Westmoreland County, PA, is expected to plead guilty and faces up to five years in prison and a fine up to $250,000. The good news is that Energy Transfer, the builder, discovered the deception and immediately reported it. ET reinspected all of the welds supposedly inspected by this worker.
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PA DEP Fines Drill Cuttings Landfill for Contaminated Runoff

Last year a sewage treatment facility in Belle Vernon (Fayette County, PA) claimed the effluent (runoff) it was receiving from a nearby landfill in Westmoreland County contained high levels of salt and radioactivity and was causing damage to their treatment system (see Another Post-Gazette Smear Job: Drill Cuttings Pollute Rivers). The landfill accepts drill cuttings–leftover rock and dirt from drilling holes (not wastewater)–yet the sewage treatment plant with help from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette made accusations against the landfill and the shale industry. The state Dept. of Environmental Protection has stepped in and brokered an agreement with the landfill (called a consent order) for the landfill to make certain corrective actions and (of course) pay a $24,000 fine.
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Olympus Energy (former H&H) Plans 2 New Wells in Upper Burrell

Upper Burrell Twp

Olympus Energy, the renamed Huntley & Huntley Energy Exploration (HHEX), continues to make Upper Burrell in Westmoreland County, PA a key area of focus. Last April we told you about the company planning its twelfth well pad in Upper Burrell (see Huntley & Huntley Proposes Another Well Pad in Upper Burrell). We’ve since lost track of the number of pads Olympus/HHEX has built in the township, but we have two more to tell you about.

NOTE: Olympus emailed to say they currently have one well pad (not 12), the Zeus pad. That one well pad has three wells in production with three additional wells permitted. However, Olympus did recently apply to build two new pads (each with a single well). We thank Olympus for the correction!
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Dominion’s SWPA JP-40 Pipeline Replacement Project Set to Begin

The new Dominion Energy Western Area HQ in Salem Twp

We recently became aware of a small (very small) Dominion pipeline project in western PA while covering the news of another smallish Dominion pipeline (see PA DEP OKs Dominion Pipeline to Feed PA NatGas to OH Power Plant). The PA Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP) recently issued a 401 certificate for the JP-40 Pipeline Replacement Project located in Salem, Hempfield, and Penn Townships, Westmoreland County.
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Big Green Appeals Penn Twp Frack Ban Case to PA Supreme Court

A leftist anti-fossil group calling itself Protect PT, in Penn Township (Westmoreland County), PA, backed with money from Big Green groups, continues to sue in an effort to block shale drilling in the township. And they keep losing their lawsuits. In November the group lost an appeal of a lower court ruling which challenges a Penn Township ordinance allowing Apex Energy and Huntley & Huntley (now Olympus Energy) to drill and operate wells (see Anti Group Loses Yet Another Penn Twp (PA) Frack Ban Case). And wouldn’t you know it? With endless gobs of Big Green money, Protect PT has just appealed its losing case to the PA Supreme Court.
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Elliot Group Breaks Ground on LNG Equipment Plant in Southwest PA

We’re always delighted to discover a new (for us) company involved in the supply chain–providing goods and/or services to the shale industry, including the downstream petrochemicals industry. Elliott Group is one of those companies not previously on our radar. Elliott’s U.S. headquarters is located in Westmoreland County, near Pittsburgh. The company designs, manufactures, and services turbomachinery, including centrifugal and axial compressors, steam turbines, and power recovery expanders. Elliott broke ground yesterday on a new facility in Jeannette where they will test their recently acquired product line of cryogenic pumps and expanders–equipment used in LNG plants.
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SWPA County Political Leaders Voice Support for Petchem, Shale

In a speech delivered October 31 to the P4 Climate Action Summit in downtown Pittsburgh, Mayor Bill Peduto declared his hatred for the petrochemical industry. He doesn’t want any more Shell crackers junking up his regional backyard. The highly negative reaction to Peduto’s idiotic (and pandering) remarks was swift. What petchem company wants to build in a region where the mayor of its largest city is trash talking the industry? In a bid to counter Peduto’s economically damaging remarks, some 20 county officials from Allegheny, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Greene, Lawrence, Mercer, Washington and Westmoreland counties issued a joint statement on Wednesday to show their support for the petrochemical and shale industries in the region.
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Anti Group Loses Yet Another Penn Twp (PA) Frack Ban Case

A leftist anti-fossil group calling itself Protect PT, in Penn Township (Westmoreland County), PA, backed with big money from Big Green groups, continues to sue in an effort to block shale drilling in the township. And they keep losing their lawsuits. Protect PT has launched multiple challenges to a local Penn Township ordinance which allows Apex Energy and Huntley & Huntley to drill and operate wells.
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Public Mtg Planned to Gin Up Opposition to SWPA Gas-Fired Plant

Elizabeth Twp

In January 2016, Invenergy announced their intention to build a natgas-powered electric plant in Elizabeth Township, in Allegheny County (see Invenergy Eyes SWPA for Second Marcellus-Powered Electric Plant). It took a few years, a lawsuit and a new location, but eventually Elizabeth commissioners approved Invenergy’s plan in December 2018 (see Elizabeth Twp in Allegheny Co. OKs Invenergy Gas-Fired Plant).
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Anti-Drilling Activist Bad-mouths Fracking at Murrysville Hearing

A paid political activist who is not a doctor but works for the so-called Physicians for Social Responsibility (left wing group), told a hearing in Murrysville (Westmoreland County), PA on Wednesday that she could not prove fracking leads to negative health affects on those living near the activity, but in the very next breath she essentially said it does, saying there’s a “strong correlation” between fracking an ill health. Her proof? A list of Big Green-paid for “health studies” (propaganda campaigns).
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Tenaska’s Westmoreland Gas-Fired Plant – Generating Power & Money

We love happy endings, and this story has one. Despite claims by anti-fossil fuelers that the Tenaska Westmoreland Generating Station in southwestern PA would spread disease and death if it got built, it’s been up and running since last December–producing power and generating money for both its builders and the community–and everyone is just fine. Cue the Pete Seeger song “Where Have All the Flowers Gone?” and replace “Flowers” with “Antis”…
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Antis Continue Attempt to Tie Childhood Cancer to SWPA Fracking

A group of enviro-Nazis has sunk to a new low in their holy mission to block Marcellus Shale drilling. A group of colluding Big Green groups along with sympathetic (and sycophantic) “reporters” (i.e propagandists) from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette are exploiting the pain and suffering of southwestern PA families of children who have cancer in their attempt to stop shale drilling. It’s disgusting and sick.
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Reap What You Sow – Overturned Act 13 Bites PA Antis on Rear

In May MDN told you about a Pennsylvania Supreme Court decision that allows shale drilling to happen *anywhere* in a township, so long as such drilling satisfies standards to protect public health, safety and welfare (see PA Supremes Say Drilling Allowed in ALL Districts of SWPA Town). The ongoing fallout from that case, and antis’ reaction to it, is instructive. We’d like to make an observation we’ve not seen made anywhere else about the case and antis’ reaction to it.
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PA’s Out-of-Control AG to Investigate Landfill Effluent as “Crime”

The smear job Pittsburgh Post-Gazette propagandists Don Hopey and David Templeton began last week continues this week–an attempt to connect drill cuttings (leftover rock and dirt from drilling a hole in the ground) to “toxic” chemicals coming from a landfill in Westmoreland County where the drill cuttings are less than half of the dumped waste. The effluent–runoff from the landfill–is piped to a nearby sewage treatment facility in Belle Vernon for processing and discharge into the Mon River.
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PA Supremes Reject Effort to Block Apex Shale Drilling in Penn Twp

Last November the judges in Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court issued a ruling in favor of Penn Township (Westmoreland County) granting “special exception” permits to Apex Energy, allowing them to drill four shale wells (see Anti Group Loses Penn Twp Frack Ban Case in PA Commonwealth Court). Anti fossil fuelers, backed by Big Green lawyers, appealed the decision to the PA Supreme Court. Yesterday the Supremes denied the appeal, meaning it’s A.O.K. for Apex to begin drilling in Penn Township.
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Another Post-Gazette Smear Job: Drill Cuttings Pollute Rivers

Yet another attack on the shale industry by two Pittsburgh Post-Gazette “reporters” (propagandists) who have made a career of unfairly attacking shale–Don Hopey and David Templeton. This latest smear job makes the claim that leachate coming from a landfill piped to a municipal wastewater treatment facility is “contaminated” with all sorts of nasty chemicals (what the heck do you think is in leachate, anyway?!). The claim is the chemicals in the leachate are present because of drillers dumping leftover rock and dirt that comes out of the ground when drilling new holes for shale wells into the landfill.
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