Monday, August 24, 2020

31 Environmental, Conservation Groups Demand DEP Revoke Mariner East Pipeline Permits

On August 24, 31 nonprofit organizations from across Pennsylvania sent a letter to the Department of Environmental Protection Secretary Patrick McDonnell demanding the DEP immediately and permanently revoke all Mariner East construction permits and prohibit the issuance of any future permits.
House and Senate members representing Chester County have issued a similar call to revoke Mariner East Pipeline permits, along with local officials in Chester County.  Read more here.
The letter comes in the wake of a recent spill of over 8,000 gallons of horizontal directional drilling (HDD) fluid, and industrial waste, into Marsh Creek Lake, a reservoir for much of Chester County’s drinking water. 
The release occurred during Sunoco’s drilling of the Mariner East hazardous liquids pipeline system, the path of which is slated to run through the headwaters of Marsh Creek Lake.  
Over 200 spills have occurred across Pennsylvania since Mariner East construction began in 2017.  
The organizations represent a diverse array of environmental organizations as well as conservation groups, grassroots community organizations, civic associations, faith-based groups, and legislative action groups. 
The groups stated that DEP has failed to protect the public and environment by allowing Sunoco to continue construction despite numerous permit violations and that “Sunoco/ Energy Transfer has lost its social license to operate in Pennsylvania.”  
The groups caution that previously issued fines have not deterred this pipeline operator from further repeated violations. 
“Energy Transfer has determined that it is uninterested in complying with Pennsylvania law and would rather pay fines as a cost of doing business,” said Joseph Otis Minott, Esq., Executive Director and Chief Counsel. “Energy Transfer has forced the hands of regulators, and at this point the only option is to shut this criminal enterprise down.”
Among the 31 groups signing the letter are: Clean Air Council, PennFuture, Delaware Riverkeeper Network, PennEnvironment, Mountain Watershed Association, Valley Forge Audubon Society and more.
Related Articles:
[Posted: August 24, 2020]  PA Environment Digest

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