Pennsylvania

Energy. Environment. Economy.

Background

Who’s giving money to the people setting Pennsylvania’s energy policy?

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Touring Wall Street Mogul’s Company, Corbett Denies Politics Influences His Visits

While touring the ACF Industries rail car manufacturing plant today in Milton, Northumberland County, Governor Corbett faced questions about whether campaign contributions and political influence factor into decisions about which companies he comes to visit. He says they don’t. “We don’t go to places just because we may or may not have gotten a campaign [...]

Rep. Jesse White Apologizes for Online Bullying of Shale Gas Supporters

KDKA-TV reports state Rep. Jesse White — a Pittsburgh area Democrat and vocal critic of the natural gas industry –has been using pseudonyms to bully online commenters who express support for shale gas development. Although he declined to comment on camera to KDKA, White issued an apology today: On occasion, I have exercised my First [...]

Fractures in the Anti-Fracking Movement

Discord over how to best protect the environment from impacts of natural gas drilling has led to a coalition of grassroots environmental groups shunning the Environmental Defense Fund. The groups plan to hold a conference call on Wednesday to “send a message…disapproving of [EDF's] willingness to be coopted by industry interests on the issue of [...]

Another Connection Between Rendell and the Gas Industry

Former Governor Ed Rendell faced criticism after he published a pro-fracking op-ed in the New York Daily News last month and failed to mention his connections to the natural gas industry. ProPublica first reported that after stepping down has governor, Rendell was hired as a paid consultant to a private equity firm with investments in the natural [...]

Is Obama’s Energy Nominee Too Close to the Oil and Gas Industry?

The Boston Globe takes a closer look at Ernest Moniz, President Obama’s choice to head the Department of Energy, questioning his connections to the oil and gas industry. Moniz was nominated to head the DOE earlier this month, and has been the director of MIT’s Energy Initiative since 2006: In a case highlighted this week by a [...]

Celebrity Anti-Fracking Group May Be in Trouble for Failing to Register as Lobbyists

An influential group of celebrity anti-fracking advocates, known as Artists Against Fracking, may be running afoul of New York State law, according to the AP: Artists Against Fracking opposes hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, and boasts members including Yoko Ono and actors Mark Ruffalo and Susan Sarandon. The group says forcing water and chemicals deep into [...]

Formal Ethics Complaint Filed Over Free Gifts Taken by Corbett

The Pennsylvania Democratic Party has filed a formal complaint with the state Ethics Commission over thousands of dollars of gifts Governor Corbett and his wife received, which include a free vacation, private jet travel, and entertainment. “Some of the activities reported do not pass the smell test,” says Pennsylvania Democratic Party chairman Jim Burn. The complaint cites [...]

Former Western PA Congressman Takes Job With Firm Promoting Gas Industry

A week after a government reform group published a report called “Fracking and the Revolving Door in Pennsylvania” the Associated Press is reporting former western PA congressman Mark Critz has taken a job with a consulting firm that works to promote the gas industry. Critz, a Democrat, lost his seat to Republican Keith Rothfus last November, [...]

Report Examines Ties Between Pennsylvania’s Regulators and the Oil and Gas Industry

Are state regulators across the country too cozy with the industry they’re in charge of overseeing? The Huffington Post takes a look at the issue, highlighting a recent report about Pennsylvania, by the Buffalo, N.Y.-based Public Accountability Initiative: Robert Galbraith, a research analyst at the Public Accountability Initiative, said public officials may indeed be trying to “leverage government regulatory positions [...]

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