natural gas

Sunoco Logistics

The state Department of Environmental Protection and the EPA continue to sample water downstream from a gasoline pipeline break in Lycoming County, and say so far no levels of petroleum have been detected that would risk public health. 

Mike Groll / AP Photo

Pipeline companies aren’t having a lot of success in New York so far in 2016. 

Matt Richmond / WSKG News

A federal task force has issued new safety recommendations for gas storage facilities, following the largest methane leak in U.S. history. The report released Tuesday comes in the wake of the massive leak at the Aliso Canyon storage field in Los Angles County, California, which sent more than 90,000 metric tons of methane into the atmosphere uncontrollably for nearly four months starting in October 2015, until it was finally sealed in February.

MARIE CUSICK/ STATEIMPACT PENNSYLVANIA

State Senator Gene Yaw (R- Bradford) is sharply criticizing his fellow Pennsylvania public officials, for what he calls a lack of leadership on Marcellus Shale natural gas issues. 

Lindsey Lazarski, WHYY

An effort to preserve and expand a Pennsylvania law designed to protect underground pipes and cables from accidental damage by construction work has almost run out of time in Harrisburg. 

SCOTT DETROW

After wending their way through a convoluted, controversial five-year process, new regulations for Pennsylvania’s Marcellus Shale drillers are set to take effect Saturday. 

WILL VON DAUSTER / COURTESY OF NOAA

A new study from NOAA, the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration, puts a new twist on a tricky question about the impact of increased oil and gas production on greenhouse gas emissions. Scientists have detected increased rates of methane emissions globally since 2007.

Trade Group Seeks To Block New Drilling Rules

Oct 4, 2016
MARIE CUSICK/ STATEIMPACT PENNSYLVANIA

An oil and gas trade group is seeking to block new Marcellus Shale drilling regulations scheduled to take effect later this week. The rules have been in development since 2011 and have been the subject of significant controversy

SUE OGROCKI

Chesapeake Energy, which is facing a royalty owners revolt here in Pennsylvania, will have to share more details of their accounting practices with the U.S. Department of Justice. The company revealed in a recent filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission that the Justice Department has subpoenaed records on the gas driller’s accounting methods for “the acquisition and classification of oil and gas properties and related matters.” 

Court Gives PA Legislature Six Months To Fix Gas Law

Sep 30, 2016
MARIE CUSICK/ STATEIMPACT PENNSYLVANIA

Pennsylvania’s highest court struck down industry-friendly portions of the state’s 2012 oil and gas law Wednesday, giving a win to municipalities and environmental groups that challenged it. But one section dealing with how the public should be alerted when a spill happens remains in limbo. 

A private practice attorney representing the Public Utility Commission before the Supreme Court in the Robinson Township case, has told a Pittsburgh newspaper that he was discouraged by the court’s decision to toss aspects of the state’s oil and gas law saying “there’s an industry trying to bring prosperity to Pennsylvania and there seems to be a small cadre trying to kill it.”

AP Photo/David Smith

In a win for environmentalists and municipalities, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court has struck down  a number of provisions to the state’s oil and gas law. At issue were several items related to the 2013 Supreme Court decision in Robinson v. Commonwealth, the controversial and wide ranging environmental ruling that eliminated parts of the state’s revised oil and gas law, known as Act 13.  

Emma Lee, WHYY

Environmental groups called on Monday for a fresh federal review of a plan to build the controversial PennEast natural gas pipeline from Pennsylvania to New Jersey after newly published route changes cast further doubt on what critics say was already a flawed Draft Environmental Impact Statement by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

JON HURDLE/STATEIMPACT PA

Delaware County’s Middletown Township decided on Monday to allow Sunoco Logistics to build its controversial Mariner East 2 pipeline through four parcels of public land but called for rigorous protections against leaks or explosions of natural gas liquids in light of  grave public concerns about the pipeline’s safety.

Joe Ulrich, WITF

Pennsylvania’s state lawmakers voted less often for pro-environment legislation and more often for bills that would weaken environmental protection in the 2015-16 legislative session than they did the previous year, according to a tally published by four environmental groups on Wednesday.

Reid Frazier, The Allegheny Front

The ramifications of the Obama administration’s recent decision to temporarily halt construction on the Dakota Access oil pipeline are being felt throughout the country– particularly in Pennsylvania. Industry executives worry about growing public opposition to pipelines, while activists have been encouraged by the success of Native American protesters.

Reid Frazier, The Allegheny Front

Pennsylvania’s Department of Environmental Protection has rejected Sunoco Logistics proposed plans to protect waterways and wetlands at risk of damage by construction of the company’s Mariner East 2 pipeline. Sunoco recently submitted what DEP refers to as “technically complete” permit applications necessary for moving forward with the pipeline project. DEP’s critiques of the permit applications come after a year of working with agency staff to resolve problems with the company’s initial proposals. 

Pipeline Protesters Show Solidarity With Native Americans In North Dakota

Sep 14, 2016
MARIE CUSICK/ STATEIMPACT PENNSYLVANIA

Protesters staged demonstrations across the country Tuesday in solidarity with Native Americans trying to stop an oil pipeline from being built on their land in North Dakota. The anti-pipeline demonstrations took place in Lebanon and Lancaster counties, as well as in Philadelphia, where President Obama made a visit to stump for his former rival, Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.

Dougtone / Flickr

When the Marcellus Shale gas boom was taking off, Bradford County welcomed it with open arms. With more than 1,000 active wells, this region in north-central Pennsylvania became one of the most heavily drilled places in the state.

Lindsey Lazarski, WHYY

Residents in one of the most drilled-on parts of Pennsylvania want to block companies from producing natural gas, citing anger over royalty payments. The supervisors in Wilmot Township, Bradford County plan to pass a resolutionTuesday demanding, “production be discontinued from wells where landowners are having their royalty checks diminished to nothing or nearly nothing.” 

Complaints Rise Over Sunoco’s Mariner East 2 Permits

Sep 6, 2016
Susan Phillips, StateImpact Pennsylvania

As landowners battle Sunoco Logistics in court over eminent domain takings, critics are pushing back against the pipeline on another front — permits the project needs from the state to move forward with construction. 

Lindsey Lazarski, WHYY

A Pennsylvania appeals court has ruled that the Department of Environmental Protection has the authority to consider the impact of gas drilling wells on public and natural resources including, but not limited to, public drinking water supplies, parks, forests, game lands, habitats of rare and endangered species, historic and archeological sites, scenic rivers, and historic landmarks. 

MARIE CUSICK/ STATEIMPACT PENNSYLVANIA

Carbon dioxide emissions from natural gas are expected to exceed those from coal for the first time in more than 40 years, according to data released Wednesday from the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

KATIE COLANERI/STATEIMPACT PENNSYLVANIA

Air pollutants from Pennsylvania’s natural gas production sites increased from 2013 to 2014, according to data released Wednesday by the Department of Environmental Protection. 

JON HURDLE/STATEIMPACT PA

Opponents of a plan to build a natural gas pipeline from northeastern Pennsylvania to central New Jersey registered their objections with federal regulators on Monday, and accused officials of trying to control public discussion on the controversial project. 

Susan Phillips, StateImpact Pennsylvania

Friends and foes of Sunoco’s Mariner East 2 plan to build two natural gas liquids pipelines across southern Pennsylvania lined up to support or attack the plan in equal measures at a public meeting called by the Department of Environmental Protectionin West Chester on Wednesday evening.

Susan Phillips, StateImpact Pennsylvania

The Obama Administration instructed federal agencies to factor climate change impacts into required environmental reviews of large projects. The White House Council on Environmental Quality released its guidance this week, six years after the original draft proposal. The move clarifies reviews required by the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).

Lindsay Lazarski/WHYY

Natural gas production in Pennsylvania is up despite a drop in the number of new wells. The Department of Environmental Protection released its 2015 annual oil and gas report on Monday, detailing such things as the number of wells drilled, locations, and inspections. 

MARIE CUSICK/ STATEIMPACT PENNSYLVANIA

The new head of the Department of Environmental Protection says he hopes his staff can work quickly to resurrect regulations for the conventional oil and gas industry that got tossed out during the annual state budget negotiations in Harrisburg. 

Former Governor Ed Rendell said he regrets putting economic gain ahead of environmental protection at the start of Pennsylvania’s shale gas boom. Speaking at a DNC event hosted by Politico in Center City Philadelphia on Wednesday, Rendell said fracking has risks but those can be mitigated.

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