Republican Rep Charity Grimm Krupa introduces HB 1656 to prohibit DEP from issuing oil and gas wastewater injection wells in PA

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Sep 6, 2023, 9:38:38 AM9/6/23
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Republican Rep. Krupa Introduces HB 1656 To Ban Oil, Gas Wastewater Injection Wells To Protect The Public From Radioactive, Toxic Materials

On September 5, Rep. Charity Grimm Krupa (R-Fayette) introduced
House Bill 1656 to prohibit DEP from issuing any permits or authorizations allowing oil and gas wastewater injection wells in Pennsylvania.

The bill also authorizes anyone who owns property or operates a business within five miles of a well drilled or altered in violation of the ban to file an action in county court to enforce compliance with the ban.

The court may grant relief in the form of actual damages, attorney fees and court costs as well as equitable and injunctive relief.

“Protecting the health and safety of our residents is one of the core functions of our government. Unfortunately, projects are occasionally proposed that endanger our citizens and I believe that an injection well for toxic oil and gas wastewater that has been proposed in a rural township in my district is just such a project,” said Rep. Krupa in announcing the legislation.

“Injection wells are wells that are used to store fluid deep underground into porous formations. 

“It has been demonstrated that the waste water from oil and gas operations has a number of radioactive elements and other toxic materials within it, which present possible health risks if they are allowed to mix with our drinking water.

“I do not believe that it is an acceptable risk to allow injection wells to be sited within our communities considering the severe consequences that may result if an accidental spill or leakage incident occurs. 

“There have been a number of injection wells that have reported issues with fluid migration and significant cracking in the lining of these wells which has led to leaks.

“My legislation would prohibit our Department of Environmental Protection from issuing any permits or authorizations which would allow for oil and gas waste water to be injected within the Commonwealth.”

Rep. Krupa’s legislation is responding to constituents opposed to an oil and gas injection well in Fayette County.  The opposition forced the withdrawal of the permit application by the company proposing it.  Read more here.

Rep. Krupa told the Observer-Reporter: “I’m very, very proud of how the community rallied and responded to this.  In my role, I don’t want this to happen in Nicholson or Springhill (townships) or anywhere in state.”

Click Here for Rep. Krupa’s co-sponsor memo.

[Note: This is the same wastewater conventional oil and gas well drillers illegally spread on dirt roads to dispose of.  Read more here.  

[Conventional oil and gas wastewater contains 32 chemicals and constituents that exceed environmental and health standards, including for radioactivity.  Read more here.

[This is the same wastewater that is now contaminating the Village of Reno’s water supply in Venango County.  Read more here.

[This issue isn’t just one method of disposal, it is all methods of disposal must be reviewed.]

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