Author Archives: Gary E. Slagel

PA DEP’s Latest Revisions to Chapter 78a for Unconventional Wells – the Good, the Bad and the Ugly

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection’s long, drawn out effort to promulgate new rules for oil and gas activities took another turn on August 12, 2015. On a DEP webinar on that day, the DEP announced several significant changes to its latest edition of proposed rules for regulating the environmental issues associated with unconventional well… Read More »

PA DEP Public Resource Proposed Rules – Will They Survive?

As reported in my June, 2015 article on this site, the DEP’s Chapter 78 rulemaking effort is not without its share of controversy and concern. Perhaps the biggest issue for the industry is the expansion of the “Public Resource” requirements in proposed Chapter 78 (Conventional Operations) and Chapter 78a (Unconventional Operations). Both packages use a… Read More »

PA Chapter 78 Rules – New Issues, New Controversies

The ongoing effort by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection to develop new rules for oil and gas activities – Chapter 78 for conventional and unconventional oil and gas operations – continues to make slow progress towards eventual promulgation in 2016. As a “reward” for the voluminous comments submitted by industry in 2014 on the… Read More »

PA DEP Reproposes Rules for Oil and Gas Wells – Industry Concerns Increase

As was previously noted on this blog site, the PA Department of Environmental Protection embarked on an effort several years ago to revise its Chapter 78 rules pertaining to the permitting and environmental issues associated with oil and gas operations. These proposed rules were published for comment in December, 2013. While the need for some… Read More »

New PA DEP Well Transfer and Status Change Procedures Detailed

The Pennsylvania DEP has developed new instructions for handling oil and gas well transfers and status and ownership changes. DEP is asking operators that as they update their well inventories that they be aware of these requirements when they submit information back to the appropriate DEP district office. The instructions summarized here are in a… Read More »

Pennsylvania’s TENORM Study is Released – What are the Conclusions?

Naturally Occurring Radioactive Material (NORM) is found in virtually all soil and rock on the earth’s surface. NORM can also be found in groundwater as the result of its contact with NORM bearing geologic formations. When human related activities disturb the soil, rock or groundwater and change the NORM from its original state, the NORM… Read More »

PA DEP Draft Policy – Tracking and Resolving Oil and Gas Violations

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (PA DEP) has been circulating a draft policy document (#550-3000-001) meant to provide guidance to department employees in the Oil and Gas Management program.   The stated purpose is to assist staff in “determining what courses of enforcement to pursue to resolve violations and bring about compliance, and to provide… Read More »

Pennsylvania General Permits For Natural Gas Facilities Air Emissions

Pennsylvania’s unconventional natural gas producers and mid-stream operators have been operating in the “Twilight Zone” when it comes to having clear and concise guidance from the Pennsylvania DEP relative to general permits for emissions from well pad sources (Exemption 38) or gathering, compression and processing facilities (GP-5).

PA Chapter 78 Rulemaking Revisions – A Break for Conventional Operations

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection’s efforts to develop new environmental performance standards for unconventional shale gas operations, pursuant to mandates in PA Act 13, contained some collateral impacts for conventional operators in the Commonwealth. As the result of some recent legislative action, some relief is being proposed for these conventional operators.