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

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Gas industry group launches election season ad blitz

With election day just over a month away, Pennsylvania’s biggest gas industry trade group is launching a statewide ad campaign to promote the benefits of the drilling boom and reclaim the word “fracking.”  At its annual Shale Insight conference Wednesday, the Marcellus Shale Coalition (MSC) announced it’s running a series of radio, television, and print [...]

State plans to give industry group $150K grant to study effects of gas drilling

The state Department of Environmental Protection has approved a $150,000 grant earmarked in the state budget for “independent research regarding natural gas drilling” to an industry-backed nonprofit organization. The funding was approved on a non-competitive basis– other groups were not able to apply for the money. The Pittsburgh-based Shale Alliance for Energy Research (SAFER PA) [...]

Billionaire enviro targeting Pa. governor’s race over climate change

Reuters reports billionaire Tom Steyer, an environmental activist and retired investor from California, has his eye – and his check book – on Pennsylvania’s gubernatorial race and other political contests. The issue he’s targeting: climate change. More from Reuters: NextGen Climate, Steyer’s political group, said Thursday it would back candidates in Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Maine, New Hampshire [...]

Did pro-drilling rally get special treatment from state police?

Last week when thousands Marcellus Shale supporters descended on the state Capitol for a rally, the Pennsylvania State Police bus safety detail showed up to do spot inspections of their parked buses on Harrisburg’s City Island. According to ABC27 News, the Governor’s Office intervened, and the head of the State Police told the inspectors to [...]

McGinty contributor got fast-tracked permit for coal plant when she ran DEP

In 2005, as the head of the state Department of Environmental Protection, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Katie McGinty fast-tracked a permit for a controversial waste coal power plant in western Pennsylvania. In recent months, McGinty has accepted $120,000 in campaign contributions from a coal executive behind the project. The Beech Hollow power plant was ultimately never built. [...]

McGinty returned campaign check from Pa. businessman tied to West Virginia spill

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Katie McGinty has returned campaign donations from a Western Pennsylvania coal executive tied to the West Virginia chemical spill. According to Capitolwire, McGinty’s campaign was unaware of the connection between the donor and Freedom Industries– the company at the center of the January accident which left thousands of people without water.

Senior DEP official invested in natural gas industry

For several years a high-ranking official at the state Department of Environmental Protection invested his personal money in the natural gas industry. Jeffrey Logan was appointed to be the DEP’s Executive Deputy Secretary for Administration and Management by Governor Corbett in January 2011. Since then, ethics filings show Logan held several natural gas investments, including Cabot [...]

Endangered species bill advances

A contentious proposal to change the way threatened and endangered species are designated in Pennsylvania cleared a House committee today. The bill would give a five-person regulatory review panel and legislators control over whether to list species the state’s game and fish commissions determine are threatened or endangered. The proposal was reported out of the [...]

Dueling Drilling Conferences To Bring Insight And Protest To Philadelphia

Drilling industry leaders and fractivists will meet again (separately) in Center City Philadelphia this week to rally and inform their constituents. For the third year in a row, the Marcellus Shale Coalition is hosting the Shale Insight (formerly known as “Shale Gas Insight”) Conference at the Pennsylvania Convention Center which brings together some big names in [...]

Range Resources Wines and Dines State Officials

One of the state’s biggest natural gas drillers, Range Resources, paid for expensive steak dinners for Corbett administration officials, state legislators, and gas industry executives, according to documents obtained by StateImpact Pennsylvania under the state’s Right To Know law. Lieutenant Governor Jim Cawley and Department of Community and Economic Development Secretary Alan Walker disclosed the dinners as gifts [...]

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