Creation of Hydraulic Fracturing Performance Standards
Shell, Chevron, the Environmental Defense Fund, the Clean Air Task Force, Consol Energy, the EQT Corporation, the Group Against Smog and Pollution, Heinz Endowments, Citizens for Pennsylvania’s Future, the Pennsylvania Environmental Council and the William Penn Foundation announced yesterday that they have created a voluntary set of performance standards aimed at minimizing pollution caused by fracking in the Appalachian Basin. They have created the Center for Sustainable Shale Development to certify energy companies on 15 initial performance standards for shale drilling with the goal of minimizing air and water pollution in the 10-state Appalachian Basin. The Pittsburgh-based Center for Sustainable Shale Development will operate as an independent entity, and will be funded in part by the participating energy companies. The standards created will form the foundation of CSSD’s independent, third-party certification process, which the center expects will expand over time, CSSD said. The standards address methods for reducing toxicity fracturing fluid, the implementation and development of emissions controls for storage tanks and groundwater protection plans, water recycling, closed loop drilling, well casing design, groundwater monitoring and wastewater disposal, according to CSSD. Gas producers can begin seeking certification in these areas later this year, CSSD said. The CSSD on Wednesday said it also plans to develop programs to share best practices. One would expect that, similar to the LEEDS certification process, independent certification of fracking operations may take hold in other shale deposit regions throughout the country.
The Law Office of Christopher D. Hopkins LLC counsels clients on a broad range of environmental issues. Should you wish for a free consultation to discuss natural gas exploration and / or hydraulic fracturing issues, please feel to contact us.
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