Monthly Archives: October 2013

Marcellus Shale Gas Update in PA

According to Bentek, a Colorado company that evaluates energy trends, Marcellus gas production in Pennsylvania and West Virginia is up by more than 50% for the first half of 2013 compared to 2012.  Indeed, Tom Murphy, Director of the Penn State University Marcellus Center for Research and Outreach, reported that the drilling rig count of… Read More »

US Fish & Wildlife Service proposes “Endangered Status” for Northern Long Eared Bat and seeks comments regarding possible designation of the species’ “critical habitat”

On October 2, 2013, the United States Department of Interior (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service) published its proposal to list the “northern long-eared bat” as an endangered species throughout its entire range.  The Agency noted that it did not have sufficient information to determine whether it would designate any areas within the bat’s range as… Read More »

Fractivists” Complain about Ozone Precursor Emissions from Oil & Gas E&P Sites

Several environmental groups are becoming more active in opposition to oil and gas exploration. Among those groups is WildEarth Guardians, a western based group with headquarters in Sante Fe, NM, and offices in Denver and Boulder, CO, and Tucson, AZ. An example of the increased activism was an early October workshop held in Glennwood Springs,… Read More »

Pennsylvania – Legislative Bills Introduced to Address Threatened and Endangered Species

As part of the permitting process for natural resource extraction permits in Pennsylvania (coal, oil, natural gas) permit applicants must conduct threatened and endangered species reviews utilizing the Pennsylvania Natural Diversity Inventory (PNDI) environmental review tool.  This online tool allows the user to search the Commonwealth’s database by entering the project area and type into… Read More »

USEPA’s New Criteria for Ammonia in Freshwater Streams

In August of 2013 US EPA published its national recommended ambient water quality criteria for the protection of aquatic life from the toxic effects of ammonia. See, 78 FR 163, August 22, 2013.  The 2013 criteria is the latest in a long history of US EPA ammonia water quality criteria recommendations that began as far… Read More »

U.S. Supreme Court Agrees to Review USEPA Greenhouse Gas Permitting

The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday, October 15, 2013 agreed to hear the challenge to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regulations concerning greenhouse gases.   Petitioners, to include industry groups and various states, expressed concern about the merits of the EPA decision to regulate mobile and stationary sources for greenhouse gases.  Six of the petitions were… Read More »

Ohio EPA’s new guidance on Best Available Technology Effective October 1, 2013

Ohio EPA proposed revisions to its 2009 Best Available Technology (BAT) guidance and to the BAT rule itself, OAC 3745-31-05, in May of this year.  After a comment period, however, Ohio EPA has moved forward to adopt only the proposed revisions to the Guidance, entitled BAT Requirements for Permits Issued On or After October 1,… Read More »

EPA Proposes To Delist CBM ELG

US EPA has been, for the past six years, evaluating the need to develop specific effluent limit guidelines (ELGs) for CBM related water discharges.  This effort was driven by the EPA’s concerns over the high levels of total dissolved solids in CBM related wastewater streams. After considerable data collection and review, the EPA proposed in… Read More »

3rd Circuit Considers Preemption of Tort Law By The Clean Air Act

On August 20, 2013, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit in Bell et al. v. Cheswick Generating Station, GenOn Power Midwest, L.P.  Case: 12-4216 answered a question of first impression: “whether the Clean Air Act preempts state law tort claims brought by private property owners against a source of pollution located within… Read More »

Proposed All Appropriate Inquiries Rule

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency issued a proposed direct-final rule on August 15, 2013 to amend the Standards and Practices for All Appropriate Inquiries to reference a standard practice recently made available by ASTM International.  78 FR 49690-49693 (Aug. 15, 2013) available at  On the same day, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency published a parallel-proposed rule,… Read More »