Gov. Tom Wolf Wednesday applauded the legislature’s approval of Senate Bill 279 (Hutchinson-R-Venango) and the unconventional Chapter 78a Environmental Protection Performance Standards at Oil and Gas Well Sites.
This follows several weeks of work between the Wolf Administration and the legislature that culminated in a bipartisan agreement that will modernize and strengthen environmental protections at oil and gas sites in Pennsylvania.
The Office of the Attorney General will now review the regulations before they are published as final in the PA Bulletin.
The governor also announced that his administration will work with the legislature to draft conventional Chapter 78 regulations to which all sides can agree.
Senate Bill 279 required the Department of Environmental Protection to start its process over to update conventional drilling regulations.
“I am pleased to have reached bi-partisan agreement with the legislature on the unconventional oil and gas regulations, which will better protect the health of our environment and our residents,” said Gov. Wolf. “These new safeguards further my goal of improving the protection of water and public resources, as well as public health and safety, and also address landowner concerns, enhance transparency, and improve data management. These regulations have been under development for more than five years, through three separate administrations and have benefited from an unprecedented process of engagement and public participation. I would like to thank both Democrats and Republicans for working together with me, and for the commitment both sides showed to ensuring our environment and our people are safe.”
The conventional and unconventional drilling regulations aimed to assure the protection of public health, safety, and the environment.
They were developed after extensive engagement with the industry and unprecedented public participation including: 20 Advisory Board and Committee meetings; 2 public comment periods; 135 days of public comment opportunity; 12 public hearings; and Nearly 28,000 comments received.
For more information, visit DEP’s Oil and Gas Rulemaking webpage.
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