Gov. Corbett Urged to Rescind Pa. Water Policy

Wednesday, 24 Oct 2012 11:20 AM

By Sandy Fitzgerald

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Environmental groups are calling on Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett to reverse policy changes that allow state administrators and not water scientists to review contamination issues surrounding Marcellus Shale drilling.
 
Fourteen groups have told the Republican governor policy changes will delay warning the public about water pollution from gas and oil development, according to Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
 
The groups say the new policy, enacted in mid-September, adds another unnecessary layer of review by government administrators. But the governor’s office and the Department of Environmental Protection insist the plan won’t delay notifications of problems to the public.
 
The environmental groups have expressed concern about a Sept. 14 email from a top official at the state environmental protection office instructing field offices to send only positive reports to  the state capital for review before issuing any water supply impact statements.
 
Before the field offices could send letters directly to homeowners that might be affected by water contamination issues.
 
The environmentalists claim the new policy was designed specifically to accommodate shale gas drilling and hydraulic fracturing.

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