The Trump administration’s plan to prop up money-losing coal and nuclear plants could have a big impact on how Pennsylvanians get their electricity. Federal regulators will now decide what to do with it.
Pennsylvania is one of more than a dozen states suing the EPA for failing to enforce on an important air pollution regulation.
In a federal lawsuit filed Monday, Pennsylvania and 13 other states, plus the District of Columbia, say the EPA blew by an October 1 deadline to designate which parts of the country are failing to meet recently tightened federal standards for ozone, or ground level smog.
Some Somerset County residents were evacuated Thursday morning after firefighters responded to a fire on a natural gas well pad.
There were no injuries. Flames and odors of gas were first reported to authorities shortly before 9 a.m., according to a Somerset County 911 incident report.
A piece of equipment on a natural gas well pad in northern West Virginia caught fire Wednesday, officials said. At the time of the fire, no one was on the pad, which has produced gas for several years, and there were no injuries.
The blaze was five or six feet high when firefighters arrived, said Tom Hart, director of Emergency Management for Marshall County. The fire was put out when workers for Pittsburgh-based EQT, which operates the well, shut the gas flow.
At a gymnasium in Waynesburg, Pennsylvania, Trenton Phillips is looking for a job as a coal miner.
Phillips already works at a company that fixes belt lines at coal mines. He’s at a job fair in Greene County today. He passes booths for health care and trucking jobs. He stops only at a booth for a coal mine contractor. He wants to become a mine foreman or supervisor.
“I’m currently looking for something where I can advance. Maybe one day be somewhere higher up, not have to break my back and use my head a little more,” says Phillips. Continue Reading
More than 63,000 gallons of natural gas drilling waste spilled into an unnamed tributary of the Loyalsock Creek this week from a well site in Lycoming County.
The spill occurred at a well operated by Colorado-based Inflection Energy, in Eldred Township, about 10 miles north of Williamsport.
Neil Shader, spokesman for the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, said state investigators don’t believe the spill will threaten public drinking water supplies, even though some drilling waste did reach a small stream.
“The sampling analysis did not show any signs of the fluid in Loyalsock Creek itself, so it hadn’t reached the main channel,” Shader said. Continue Reading
A group of residents in Westmoreland County hopes a judge will halt expansion of gas drilling in their township, and will throw out a zoning ordinance that allows drilling in most of the community.
Protect PT’s lawsuit against Penn Township’s Zoning Hearing Board is scheduled for county court in January. For now, a judge has issued a partial injunction against a drilling company. Apex Energy is allowed to build a well pad in the township, but can’t drill or frack for natural gas on it while the case works its way through the courts.
It’s the latest in a series of fracking-related battles in which a 1970s-era environmental rights constitutional amendment is playing a central role.
A New York company is planning to build a natural gas plant in Pennsylvania’s biggest coal county. Hilltop Energy Center LLC, a Huntington Bay, N.Y.-based company, is proposing to build a 600-megawatt natural gas power plant in Cumberland Township, Greene County. Continue Reading
A group of activists demanded Allegheny County health officials rein in air pollution from the largest coke plant in North America. The Clairton Coke Works is one of the biggest pollution sources in Western Pennsylvania. The Allegheny County Health Department determined the plant violated the terms of its air permits 6,700 times over a 3 ½ year period.
The long record of violations drew a crowd of activists to a meeting at the health department Wednesday, where several told the agency to clean the plant up. Continue Reading
Pennsylvania’s biggest environmental group is getting a new CEO.
Jacquelyn Bonomo is succeeding Larry Schweiger as the leader of PennFuture. Schweiger is retiring.
Bonomo has been the organization’s executive vice president and COO for the past two years, and has spent more than three decades working in environmental advocacy. Continue Reading