Category Archives: Environmental

PA DEP – A New General Permit for Methane Emissions from Natural Gas Operations

At the December meeting of the DEP’s Air Quality Technical Advisory Committee, representatives from the DEP’s Bureau of Air Quality presented the committee with some proposed changes they are planning to address methane emissions from natural gas operations.  Specifically, the DEP is proposing to revise its existing general permit program to regulate emissions from new… Read More »

The Fourth Circuit’s Decision in OVEC v. Fola Coal Company Set to Impact this Region’s Regulated Community

On January 4, 2017, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit issued a decision that could severely impact this region’s regulated community. In Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition v. Fola Coal Co., LLC, the Court upheld a decision from the United States District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia in which… Read More »

Workplace Drug Testing: What’s Reasonableness Got to Do With It?

On October 19, 2016, OSHA issued a letter of interpretation to clarify certain provisions 29 C.F.R. §§1904.35(b)(1)(i) and (iv) recently amended by the “Improve Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses” rule (hereinafter “the rule” or “OSHA’s rule”). OSHA’s rule requires employers to ensure “a reasonable procedure” for employees to report workplace injuries that does not… Read More »

Enhancing Chemical Safety and Environmental Performance Workshop

Dean Cordle, President and CEO of AC&S, Inc., Chair of the WV Chemical Industry Committee of the WVMA and Board Member of the American Chemistry Council has worked to organize a workshop titled, “Enhancing Chemical Safety and Environmental Performance.”  This workshop is jointly sponsored by the American Chemistry Council, WV Manufacturers Association and the National… Read More »

Another PA Supreme Court Decision Affecting Oil and Gas Operations

September 28, 2016 was another tough day for Pennsylvania’s oil and gas industry, the PA Department of Environmental Resources and the PA General Assembly as the Commonwealth’s highest court called into question portions of PA Act 13 of 2012, the Oil and Gas Act.  While legal minds are still reading and interpreting the 88 page… Read More »

2016 TSCA Reporting Update

US EPA recently announced that the 2016 TSCA Reports for chemical manufactures will now be due by October 31.  Previously the reports were due on September 30, 2016.  This extension should be published in the U.S. Federal Register soon.  A copy of the pre-publication version of the extension is available at Information on TSCA… Read More »

2016 TSCA Reporting

The 2016 TSCA Reports for chemical manufacturers are due by September 30, 2016.  Production volumes of chemicals manufactured are included in this report.  Under TSCA the import of a chemical is considered manufacturing.  Unlike previous years, the manufacturers are required to report production volumes from 2012 through 2015.  In previous reports only the previous calendar… Read More »

PA DEP Chapter 78 Rules for Conventional Wells – Gone But Not Forgotten

In late June of this year Pennsylvania Governor Wolf signed Senate Bill 279.  This enactment, now known as Act 52 of 2016, created the Pennsylvania Grade Crude Development Advisory Council.  This seventeen member council will oversee DEP actions and policies that impact conventional oil and gas activities.  However and more importantly for the Commonwealth’s conventional… Read More »

New Guidance Requires Federal Agencies to Consider GHG Emissions and Climate Change in their NEPA Reviews

The President’s Council on Environmental Quality (“CEQ”) has finalized guidance to assist federal agencies in their consideration of the effects of greenhouse gas (“GHG”) emissions and climate change when evaluating proposed federal actions under the National Environmental Policy Act (“NEPA”). According to the CEQ, the guidance will “facilitate compliance with existing NEPA requirements, thereby improving… Read More »

EPA Releases National Chronic Aquatic Life Water Quality Criterion for Selenium – But Environmental Groups are Unsatisfied

Selenium discharges from coal mines in West Virginia and other states have been the subject of contentious and expensive litigation, regulatory enforcement and EPA permit objections for over a decade, including stringent effluent limitations in NPDES permits and agency- or judicially-mandated construction of sometimes multi-million-dollar selenium treatment systems.1  The basis for the water quality criteria… Read More »