PEC Applauds IRRC Approval of Environmental Protections at Oil and Gas Well Sites

Contacts: John Walliser, Davitt Woodwell
Date: April 21, 2016
Phone: (412) 481-9400
Email: [email protected]; [email protected]

Pittsburgh – Today the Pennsylvania Environmental Council (PEC) hailed the Independent Regulatory Review Commission’s (IRRC) approval of proposed regulations to enact long-overdue environmental protection and performance standards at oil and gas well sites. PEC President Davitt Woodwell issued the following statement:

“We are pleased the Independent Regulatory Review Commission has confirmed what we and the public have been saying for the past several years – these regulations are reasonable and necessary for the protection of public health and the environment. It’s long past time for Pennsylvania, after an unprecedented and prolonged engagement process, to put these rules into practice.”

The proposed rulemaking, initiated more than four years ago after passage of Act 13 of 2012 by the General Assembly and Governor, involved two separate public comment periods, 12 public hearings, and dozens of meetings with stakeholders by the Department of Environmental Protection. Approval by IRRC represents one of the key final steps in Pennsylvania’s complex regulatory process

“The General Assembly should honor the very regulations and standards they called for four years ago, and recognized by IRRC today as in the public interest” said Woodwell. “The Department of Environmental Protection has taken unprecedented efforts to engage the public, industry, and other stakeholders in developing and presenting these rules, which set the commitment necessary for our state, and for industry, to truly say we are following leading practices. It is not the end of the dialogue by any means — continuous improvement should always be our goal — but it is a long-overdue step in meeting our obligation to allow for safe resource development, while also protecting the people and environment of Pennsylvania.”