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No noise limits in new regulations

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has shared that the new proposed drilling regulations won’t be including a few specific things.

The final drafts of the Chapter 78 and 78a drilling regulations, which regulate environmental standards for conventional and unconventional surface drilling for oil and gas well site, have officially been released by the DEP. However, the new draft revisions do not include regulations on noise limits or centralized wastewater storage tanks, reports the Pittsburgh Business Times.

The DEP made the following statement regarding the revisions:

Because of the complex nature of noise mitigation, it was determined that a separate process is more appropriate to address those concerns. In terms of centralized storage tanks, the department decided to remove this provision because these facilities will continue to be regulated under the residual waste regulations.

The drilling regulations have been under revision since 2011, and according to the DEP, 30,000 comments were received and 12 public hearings were conducted over the course of the last 4 years.

The DEP’s Secretary John Quigley explained how the DEP requested input from the public and that is exactly what the department received:

We asked the people of Pennsylvania for their concerns about developing oil and gas resources in the commonwealth, and they answered … These amendments reflect a balance between meeting the needs of the industry and the needs of public health and the environment; all while enabling drilling to proceed.

Hearings regarding the final drafts of the regulations will take place later this month and during September.

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