Pennsylvania

Energy. Environment. Economy.

Pa. DEP is ‘monitoring’ Ohio earthquake situation

Although Ohio recently changed its drilling permit rules over concerns hydraulic fracturing caused recent earthquake activity there, the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection is not planning on changing its rules at this time, according to the New Castle News.

The DEP did not respond to a request by StateImpact Pennsylvania to comment, but a spokeswoman told the New Castle News the department is monitoring the situation in Ohio:

James Zehringer, director of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, said, “While we can never be 100 percent sure that drilling activities are connected to a seismic event, caution dictates that we take these new steps to protect human health, safety and the environment.

But in Pennsylvania, Morgan Wagner, a spokeswoman for the Department of Environmental Protection, said Monday that because the state “has no history of seismic events related to drilling, fracking or disposal wells,” the DEP “does not believe that there is enough information about the Ohio incident to relate hydraulic fracturing to an increased potential for earthquakes in Pennsylvania.”

Wagner added, “We are, however, monitoring Ohio’s situation and have the authority to shut down any well at any time if concerns were to develop.”

Links between oil and gas production and increased earthquake activity have usually been related to disposal of wastewater in deep injection wells–not the fracking process itself.

Comments

About StateImpact

StateImpact seeks to inform and engage local communities with broadcast and online news focused on how state government decisions affect your lives.
Learn More »

Economy
Education