A little known provision of the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) Underground Injection Control (UIC) program allows certain oil and gas and mining activity to occur in groundwater that would otherwise be protected as a drinking water source. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) developed the program in the early days of SDWA implementation to respond to oil and gas interests who cited SDWA language which states that EPA “may not prescribe requirements for state UIC programs which interfere with or impede” the injection of fluids associated with oil and gas production. Extraction proponents argued that certain energy extraction activities would not be able to continue if all underground sources of drinking water everywhere were protected. As a result, an aquifer is now eligible for an exemption if it meets certain regulatory criteria.
Trenton, NJ -- David Pringle, NJ Campaign Director of Clean Water Action, issued the following statement in response to the NJ State Senate's vote an hour ago on the Pinelands Commission that brought arm-twisting to new levels.
"Shame on Senate President Sweeney and Governor Christie for replacing an impeccably credentialed civil servant with an unqualified alternative. That is not the worse part - the arm twisting and dirty politics that led senators to vote against their conscious was beyond the pale. This nomination was defeated on its merits 4 times before the bullies got their way. So much for zero tolerance for bullies!
Philadelphia, PA - Today, March 11, 2015, Clean Water Action, Delaware Riverkeeper Network, and PennEnvironment urged City Council to support Councilman Kenyatta Johnson's resolution tomorrow that urges Congress and the United States Department of Transportation to release specifications for tank car design and for Philadelphia rail companies to rapidly upgrade and replace crude oil tank cars. The resolution also urges the Philadelphia Office of Emergency Management (OEM) to be more transparent and conduct emergency response workshops, specific to crude by rail, in communities at risk.