Thousands Ask for Stricter Drilling Rules
This April, the state Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) released changes to its 2014 proposed oil and gas regulation revisions. Though DEPs latest proposals follow tens of thousands of comments from the public, advocates, issue experts and industry and reflect some improvement, Clean Water Action believes further changes are still needed.
For example, DEP would continue to allow open pits for storing gas drilling wastes. While open pits on well sites would now be banned, industry would still be allowed to use huge off-site pits, each serving multiple wells — pits as large as two football fields and holding 15 million gallons of toxic wastewater. Read more
Yet despite a proposed by budget from Governor Wolf that would reverse these trends, the legislature passed their own budget that continues to cut funding for DEP, invests nothing in renewable energy, and raids funds meant to improve our state parks and forests.
Last year, Pennsylvania rolled back protections for our best rivers and streams, which you helped put in place. Now, developers can destroy trees for new development next to rivers.
Furthermore, the new policy states that replacing a forested buffer miles away from their project is an acceptable alternative. Maintaining existing buffers should be mandatory. Buffers are proven to be the best way to protect water quality. Trees, shrubs, and other plants that line the banks of waterways filter pollution, reduce flooding, and create healthy habitat.
Combating air pollution in Allegheny County, organizing with residents in the municipalities across the Ohio River to reduce the pollution coming from Neville Island and ensure that industry is being a "good neighbor is just some of our work to make air cleaner in Allegheny County.Find out more at the Bucket Bridgade.