Wednesday, December 27, 2023

DEP Citizens Advisory Council To Discuss The PFOA/PFOS ‘Forever Chemical’ Drinking Water Standard, Hydrogen Hubs In PA At Jan. 9 Meeting

DEP Citizens Advisory Council is scheduled to meet on January 9 for an update on the PFOA/PFOS ‘Forever Chemical’ drinking water standard and hydrogen hubs in Pennsylvania.


Jill Anderson and Dawn Hissner, from DEP’s Bureau of Safe Drinking Water, will provide an update on the PFOA/PFOS maximum contaminant level published on January 13, 2023.  Read more here.

DEP’s presentation to Council outlined the steps taken to develop the MCL and its major provisions as well as the steps EPA is taking to regulate ‘Forever Chemicals’ along with federal funding available for PFAS treatment projects and monitoring.

Widespread PFAS Contamination Statewide

In August, the US Geological Survey and DEP published the results of a 2019 PFAS ‘forever chemical’ sampling showing 76% of the studied streams contained PFAS contamination.  Read more here.

In September, DEP announced it is ramping up water monitoring and plans to develop a surface water standard for PFAS 'forever chemicals' as a result of the DEP/U.S. Geological Survey study results.  Read more here.

PFAS Contamination In Shale Gas Operations

Also in September, DEP released an April 2023 DEP determination involving natural gas drilling contaminated of a Washington County family’s water well that said the “widespread presence of PFAS Forever chemicals in fresh water may have led to “inadvertently” using contaminated water to frack a shale gas well.  Read more here.

DEP does not require shale gas operators to sample the water they use for PFAS-related chemicals, therefore it is not known if fracking operations are spreading PFAS contamination to previously uncontaminated areas.  Read more here.

Visit DEP’s PFAS in Pennsylvania webpage for more information on PFAS chemicals.

Hydrogen Hubs

Thomas Murphy from Team PA will give a presentation on the current status of Hydrogen Hubs in Pennsylvania and will be available to answer questions.

In October, the US Department of Energy awarded two hydrogen hub projects that include Pennsylvania-- a natural gas-based Appalachian Hub in Western PA, West Virginia and Ohio and a Mid-Atlantic Hub in eastern PA, Delaware and New Jersey based on the use of renewable and nuclear energy to make the hydrogen.  Read more here.

CNX Pulls Out Of Western PA Hub Project

On December 15, CNX Resources announced it has ended coordination with the Adams Fork "clean ammonia" project in Mingo County, West Virginia and is evaluating several viable alternative sites in southern West Virginia for clean hydrogen projects.  Read more here.

CNX cited an inability to reach final commercial terms with project developers and delays and increasing uncertainty over implementation rules guiding the use of the 45V hydrogen production tax credit provisions of the federal Inflation Reduction Act (IRA).

The Adams Fork Energy Plant is an anchor project in the ARCH2 Hydrogen Hub recently approved by the federal government.  Read more here.

Proposed Hydrogen Tax Credit Guidelines

On December 22, the U.S. Department of the Treasury and Internal Revenue Service released proposed regulations for comment on the Clean Hydrogen Production Credit established by the federal Inflation Reduction Act.

While clean hydrogen holds considerable potential to reduce emissions across a range of sectors and applications, conventional hydrogen production typically results in significant climate pollution.

The Clean Hydrogen Production Credit aims to make production of clean hydrogen with minimal climate pollution more economically competitive and accelerate development of the U.S. clean hydrogen industry.

The safeguards outlined in the proposed rules are critical to preventing the credit from subsidizing hydrogen production with higher lifecycle greenhouse gas emissions than allowed by the statute.

The IRA establishes a Clean Hydrogen Production Credit with four technology-neutral credit tiers based on the emissions rate of a hydrogen production process.

For hydrogen production facilities meeting prevailing wage and registered apprenticeship requirements, the amount of the credit ranges from $.60 per kilogram (kg) of hydrogen produced to $3 per kg of hydrogen, depending on the lifecycle emissions of the hydrogen production.  Read more here.

Visit the Team PA website for more information.

DEP Updates

Jessica Shirley, Interim Acting DEP Secretary is scheduled to provide an update on agency activities.

DEP also provided Council with a written report on its activities.

Public Comment

Individuals interested in providing public comment during the Council meeting must sign up in advance of the meeting by contacting Ian Irvin, Council Executive Director,  

The Council encourages the submission of a written copy of public comments prior to the meeting so that they can be shared with CAC members in advance, posted to the CAC’s website under the relevant meeting date, and properly summarized in the meeting minutes.

Join The Meeting

The meeting will be held in Room 105 Rachel Carson Building starting at 12:30 p.m.  Click Here to learn how to join the meeting via Microsoft Teams and telephone.

For more information and available handouts, visit the DEP Citizens Advisory Council webpage.  Questions should be directed to Ian Irvin, Executive Director,

[Posted: December 27, 2023]  PA Environment Digest

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