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Pennsylvania’s Disclosure Rules: What The Frack’s In The Ground?

One burning question about the shale boom: what exactly are companies pumping into the ground to release oil and gas? Since 2011, the website FracFocus.org has become a national clearinghouse for public information about the chemicals, sand and water used to frack wells. FracFocus started out as a voluntary disclosure site, but is now a [...]

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PA Supreme Court rules with environmentalists over remaining issues in Act 13

In a win for environmentalists and municipalities, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court has struck down  a number of provisions to the state’s oil and gas law. At issue were several items related to the 2013 Supreme Court decision in Robinson v. Commonwealth, the controversial and wide ranging environmental ruling that eliminated parts of the state’s revised oil and [...]

Pa. Supreme Court weighs major gas drilling laws

Lindsay Lazarski/WHYY Test technicians Charles Young and Ethan Eckard use joysticks and touch screens to operate a Schramm drilling rig. Decisions on two major gas drilling cases are now in the hands of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. Oral arguments were heard Wednesday in Philadelphia. One case includes unresolved issues from the 2013 Supreme Court decision [...]

Fracking health complaints received little follow-up from the Department of Health

Newly released documents from the Pennsylvania Department of Health on fracking-related health complaints reveal a lack of follow-through and inaccurate record-keeping. The telephone logs, which span four years from 2011 to 2015, were gained through a Right-to-Know request by the environmental group Food and Water Watch. The documents include about 87 separate complaints from residents [...]

Commonwealth Court throws out several challenges to Act 13, including ‘doctor gag rule’ [UPDATED]

This post has been updated to include additional comments on the ruling. Pennsylvania doctors have nothing to worry about when it comes to the so-called “gag order” on chemical exposures from oil and gas drilling. That’s the message from the Commonwealth Court today in a much-anticipated ruling on provisions of the state’s two-year-old oil and [...]

Federal court dismisses doctor’s lawsuit over Act 13 “gag rule”

Capitolwire reports a federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit from a Luzerne County doctor over an aspect of Pennsylvania’s drilling law (Act 13) that deals with health professionals’ access to information about the chemicals used in fracking. More from Capitolwire: Federal District Judge Richard Caputo found Dr. Alfonso Rodriguez lacked standing to sue the Department [...]

Court to hear oral arguments in Act 13 case

The Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court is set to hear oral arguments today in the ongoing legal battle over the state’s 2012 oil and gas law, known as Act 13. The state Supreme Court struck down several provisions of the law in December– including portions that restricted the ability of local governments to zone oil and gas [...]

Meet the Candidates: Allyson Schwartz

This is the third in a series of interviews with the gubernatorial candidates on issues related to shale gas development in Pennsylvania. Meet the candidate in a brief video, and read a more detailed transcript of our interview below. Both the video and transcript have been edited, separately, for length and clarity. The primary is on May [...]

What’s still at stake in the Act 13 court battle?

It appears that much of Pennsylvania’s two-year-old oil and gas law, known as Act 13, will remain intact despite a continuing court battle over its constitutionality. The Commonwealth Court issued an order this week stating the parties in the case have agreed to argue a narrow set of issues– not including Pennsylvania’s gas drilling impact fee, [...]

McGinty: Gas is part of ‘secret sauce’ to drive economic growth

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Katie McGinty said today she views the Marcellus Shale as an important economic driver, while pressing for a severance tax on gas production. “I don’t support a moratorium,” she said. “I think the responsible production and use of the Marcellus Shale gas is actually part of the secret sauce as to how [...]