PA Wells, Gas Production Increase

On March 2, 2017, the Pennsylvania Independent Fiscal Office released its 2016 4th Quarter Natural Gas Production Report. The IFO found that production of natural gas increased 6.8% in Pennsylvania in 2016. Pennsylvania operators drilled just 504 horizontal wells in 2016, the lowest number since… Read more

USGS Releases PA Test Results

On March 6, 2017, the U.S. Geological Survey released the test results of 75 private drinking water wells in Lycoming County, in north-central Pennsylvania. USGS found that water from most of the sampled wells contain concentrations of radon that exceed a proposed, non-binding health standard for… Read more

Colorado Report Finds Low Risk of Health Effects

In February 2017, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment issued an “Assessment of Potential Public Health Effects from Oil and Gas Operations in Colorado.” The Health Assessment Report concluded that, based on currently available air monitoring data, “the risk of harmful health… Read more

EPA Withdraws ICR for Oil and Gas Operators

On March 2, 2017, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency issued notice that the agency is withdrawing its requests that owners and operators in the oil and natural gas industry provide information on equipment and emissions at existing oil and natural gas facilities. Upon publication in the… Read more

USGS Releases 2017 Induced Seismicity Forecast

On March 1, 2017, the U.S. Geological Survey released an updated hazard map that forecasts the likelihood of induced seismic events for the coming year. This is the second year that USGS has published an induced seismicity forecast. Previously, the agency only projected naturally occurring seismic… Read more

Ohio EPA Finalizes New Compressor Station GPS

On March 2, 2017, the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency finalized several general permits relating to natural gas compressor stations and similar facilities. The general permits are designed for facilities typically found near gathering lines leading to interstate transmission networks. In order… Read more

Trump Administration Orders Review of Waters of the U.S. Rule

On February 28, 2017, President Donald Trump signed an executive order that requires the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to review the final “Waters of the U.S.” rulemaking published on June 29, 2015. The “Waters of the U.S.” rulemaking defines the scope of… Read more

PADEP Assesses Operator $1.2 Million Penalty

On February 27, 2017, the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection announced that it agreed to a $1.2 million civil penalty with an operator to settle violations related to a 2012 impoundment leak. According to the PADEP news release, in September 2012, testing of five private water… Read more

USGS to Release Updated Hazard Maps

On February 23, 2017, the U.S. Geological Survey announced that it will release updated maps detailing the potential of natural and induced seismic events on March 1, 2017. The 2017 maps mark the second year that USGS has projected both natural and induced seismic risks. USGS previously stated that… Read more

PA Alleges Salamanders Harmed by Spill

On February 22, 2017, Penn Live reported that Pennsylvania District Judge Jerry C. Lepley sent a summons to two oil and natural gas companies concerning an alleged leak of flowback water in Lycoming County. According to the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission, the two companies allowed over 1,000… Read more

Duke Releases Study on Oil and Gas Related Spills

On February 21, 2017, the journal Environmental Science & Technology published “Unconventional Oil and Gas Spills: Risks, Mitigation Priorities, and State Reporting Requirements,” an assessment of spill data from unconventional development operations in Colorado, New Mexico, North Dakota, and… Read more

Railroad Commission to Post Quarterly Enforcement Data

On February 16, 2017, the Texas Railroad Commission announced that the agency will be adding quarterly oil and gas enforcement data to its website. Beginning with the first quarter of 2017, the Commission will post summary data detailing the number of: (1) oil and gas facility inspections with no… Read more

Court Allows CWA Citizen Suit to Proceed

On January 30, 2017, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana denied an oil and natural gas operator's motion to dismiss a Clean Water Act citizen suit that alleges that the operator dredged near the shore of Lake Grand Ecaille without a permit. The plaintiff, the Louisiana… Read more

PADEP Alleges Correlation Between Development and Seismic Event

On February 17, 2017, the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection held a press conference to announce its finding that Utica shale hydraulic fracturing activities conducted on April 25, 2016 correlated to microseismic, or unfelt seismic events. According to PADEP, hydraulic fracturing… Read more

Colorado Seeks Injunction of Boulder County Moratorium

On February 14, 2017, Colorado Attorney General Cynthia H. Coffman filed suit in Colorado state court to enjoin Boulder County’s five-year moratorium on new drilling permits. The Attorney General alleges in the petition that the County has extended or re-imposed the five-year moratorium a total of… Read more

PADEP to Hold Webinar on Induced Seismicity

Today, the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection announced that it will hold a public webinar tomorrow, February 17, 2017 to discuss its review of seismic events that occurred in Lawrence County on April 25, 2016. According to PADEP, a series of low-magnitude seismic events on April… Read more

Railroad Commission Statistics Point to Rebound

On February 10, 2017, the Texas Railroad Commission released its permits and completions statistics for January 2017. The RRC issued a total of 956 original drilling permits during January 2017, nearly double the number of original drilling permits issued during the same period last year. The… Read more

Dallas Appeals Court Overturns Intentional Nuisance Verdict

On February 1, 2017, the Dallas Court of Appeals overturned a jury’s finding that an operator’s oil and natural gas activities created an intentional nuisance for a nearby landowner. The landowner brought suit against the operator for “environmental contamination and polluting events,” including… Read more