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Clean Air Act

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Air pollution increases at Pennsylvania’s natural gas sites

Sulfur dioxide emissions jumped 57 percent from 2012 to 2013 at the state’s natural gas production sites, according to data released today by the Department of Environmental Protection. Sulfur dioxide contributes to acid rain, and causes respiratory problems including asthma.  Other air pollutants that contribute to public health impacts also increased. These jumps in emissions [...]

Federal court weighs in on air emissions controversy in Pa. gas fields

A federal court weighed in on a contentious debate over air emissions from Pennsylvania’s oil and gas sector this week. In Citizens for Pennsylvania’s Future v. Ultra Resources Inc., Pennsylvania’s Middle District Court ruled against the environmental group, more commonly known as PennFuture, and in favor of the gas company. But in the 31-page decision, U.S. [...]

Silenced Critic of Dimock’s Water Problems Switches to Air Pollution Concerns

One of Dimock’s most outspoken critics of gas drilling in Northeast Pennsylvania says she has shifted gears and changed tactics by networking with industry. Victoria Switzer says she wants to persuade drillers to use the best available technologies that reduce air emissions beyond current regulatory requirements. Switzer may be best known for her witticisms shaming [...]

DEP Fines Lehigh Valley Coal-Burning Plant for Air Pollution Violations

Northampton Generating Company, which provides electricity to about 100 households in Northampton County, will pay $119,345 to the state’s Clean Air Fund. The Department of Environmental Protection says the company violated emission limits for carbon dioxide and sulfur dioxide five times over two and a half years between 2009 and 2012. It also reported false [...]

DEP Says Marcellus Air Emissions Data Show Small Footprint

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection Secretary Michael Krancer says air emissions associated with Marcellus Shale production are a “small fraction of air pollution in the state.” The DEP announced the release of air emissions data collected in 2011. In the announcement, Secretary Krancer stressed that air emissions in the state have dropped since drilling [...]

DEP Enacts More Stringent Air Quality Rules for Nat Gas Operations

The Department of Environmental Protection released new air quality permit rules for natural gas production sites. DEP says the new emission limits are “75 to 90 percent stricter than current limits for the largest, most common types of engines used at compressor stations.” Compressor stations help transport the gas along pipelines and in the process [...]

EPA Sets New Standards for Soot Pollution

The smoke stacks at American Electric Po

Acting under a court order to update its soot standards, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced stricter regulations late last week. Exposure to soot (also known as  fine particulate matter) is linked to many health problems including heart disease, diabetes, asthma, and premature death. The new rules will tighten air quality standards related to [...]

Study Finds Air Pollutants Near Drilling Sites

A peer-reviewed study published last week shows air quality impacts near drilling sites in rural Colorado. “An Exploratory Study of Air Quality Near Natural Gas Operations,” conducted by The Endocrine Disruption Exchange, was published in the journal Human and Ecological Risk Assessment. The study is the first to measure air quality before, during and after drilling [...]

Environmental Groups Petition EPA Over Fracking Disclosure

Environmental groups from across the country have signed on to a petition asking the EPA to include the oil and gas industry in a national database of chemical releases. The Toxics Release Inventory requires companies to report the quantity of chemicals that end up in the air, water, land, landfills, and treatment facilities. Congress established [...]

As Election Nears, A New Debate Over ‘Clean Coal’

Imagine a chart tracking U.S. greenhouse gas emissions since 2005.  Do you imagine a line heading up, or down?  It’s down actually.  Emissions are decreasing, thanks to the weak economy, more use of wind and solar power, and the sudden influx of cleaner burning natural gas. So where does that leave Pennsylvania’s former energy titan, [...]

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