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DEP Finds 2 More Petro Erie, Inc. Conventional Oil Well Wastewater Tanks With A Pipe Leading To A Discharge Area In A Ditch In Sugarcreek Boro, Venango County
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On August 21, 2023, DEP did a detailed inspection of conventional oil well wastewater tanks near the Lower Reno 1 well operated by Petro Erie, Inc. in Sugarcreek Borough, Venango County and found a pipe running from wastewater tanks into a ditch with a visible impact area from past discharges.

The Lower Reno 1 wastewater tanks are in the same area as the Lower Reno 6 wastewater tanks that discharged wastewater that contaminated the Village of Reno water supply.  Read more here.

The August 21 DEP inspection found two 4,200 gallon fiberglass wastewater tanks that were connected together with piping.  DEP’s report said there “does not appear to be a way to empty either tank by means of a water truck hose connection without altering the plumbing of the tanks.”

There were four other 4,200 gallon steel tanks at the location and across a dirt road that “appear to be full of oil.”

DEP’s report said, “[A] 2" black poly line that runs from the hillside from the wells on the lease and ties into the brine [wastewater] tanks has a "T" fitting and a valve to discharge produced fluid to the ground via a ditch from a cross-culvert of the access road.

“The 2" valve on the black poly pipeline is closed and plugged. The pipe was not actively discharging or leaking.

“However, there is a visible impact area within the ditch of the cross-culvert [in which] the black poly line is laid. Soil conductivity readings indicate that a brine discharge has occurred at the site.

“The impacted area inside the ditch extends approximately 80' [feet] downslope from the access road culvert and ending just before a second culvert for another old access road. The width on average of the ditch is about 5' [feet].

“The amount of the discharged produced fluid is unknown.”

DEP issued new notices of violation for these discharge of wastewater, failure to protect groundwater and disposing of waste on the ground.

DEP’s inspection report requested Petro Erie, Inc to provide a written report by September 8, 2023 on how they will bring the wastewater tanks into compliance.

[Petro Appeals Cleanup Order]

[On August 18, Petro Erie, Inc. filed an appeal with the Environmental Hearing Board of the field order DEP issued on July 21, 2023 ordering the company to cleanup the conventional oil well wastewater spill that contaminated the Village of Reno’s water supply in Venango County near the Lower Leno 6 well. [Docket No. 2023063]   Read more here.]

Visit DEP’s Northwest Regional Office Venango Water Company/ Petro Erie, Inc. Investigation webpage for more information.

Aqua Pennsylvania has set up a dedicated Venango webpage to provide updates to residents about its emergency management of the Venango Water Company.

(Photos: Two  wastewater tanks near Leno 1 well; tanks plumbed together with piping; t-fitting going to wastewater tanks; pipe going through the woods down to a ditch; pipe in ditch impact area.)

NewsClips This Week - Petro Erie:

-- The Derrick - Makayla Keating: DEP Cites Petro Erie With 5 Additional Violations [For More Leaking Conventional Oil Well Wastewater Tanks In Sugarcreek Boro, Venango County, Near Contaminated Reno Water Supply]  [PDF of article]

-- The Derrick: No Word Yet On When Do Not Consume Water Advisory Will Be Lifted For The Village Of Reno Water Supply Contaminated By Conventional Oil Well Wastewater In Venango County  [PDF of article]

-- The Derrick: DEP Opens Webpage For Updates On Village Of Reno Water Supply, Venango County; Actions Related To Petro Erie, Inc. Conventional Oil Driller Who Contaminated The Water  [PDF of article]

-- The Derrick - Letter To Editor: Disappointed In Lack Of Involvement In Sen. Hutchinson, Rep. James To Resolve Village Of Reno Water Contamination Issue In Venango County [Polluted By Conventional Oil Well Wastewater Spill]   [PDF of Article]

DEP Environmental Justice Proposal:

-- New DEP Interim Final Environmental Justice Policy, Definition Of Environmental Justice Areas Effective Sept. 16; Public Comments Accepted Thru Oct. 29  [PaEN]

Related Articles - Natural Gas Harm:

-- Post-Gazette Editorial: Who Pays For Natural Gas Development’s Harm?  Pennsylvania Should Acknowledge The Clear Fact That Fracking Has Hurt People, Specifically Children  [PaEN]

PA Environment Digest:

-- Oil & Gas Industrial Facility Impacts In PA

PA Oil & Gas Industry Public Notice Dashboards:

-- Pennsylvania Oil & Gas Weekly Compliance Dashboard - August 19 to 25 - More Abandoned Conventional Wells; Gas Frack-Out; More Leaking Wastewater Tanks; Equitrans Cleanup Continues  [PaEN] 

-- DEP Finds 2 More Petro Erie, Inc. Conventional Oil Well Wastewater Tanks With A Pipe Leading To A Discharge Area In A Ditch In Sugarcreek Boro, Venango County  [PaEN]

-- Petro Erie, Inc. Appeals DEP’s July Field Order To Clean Up Conventional Oil Well Wastewater Spill Contaminating Village Of Reno’s Water Supply In Venango County; 2nd Appeal May Be Coming  [PaEN]

-- Equitrans Determined Leak Of Over 1.1 Billion Cubic Feet Of Natural Gas From Cambria County Storage Facility Was Caused By Corrosion In Conventional Gas Well Casing  [PaEN]

-- PA Oil & Gas Industrial Facilities: Permit Notices/Opportunities To Comment - August 26  [PaEN]

-- Susquehanna River Basin Commission To Vote Sept. 14 On Budget, Climate Change Resolution, Water Withdrawal Requests, Including 8 Shale Gas Drilling Operations - 1 In Exceptional Value Loyalsock Creek  [PaEN]

-- Susquehanna River Basin Commission Approves 25 Shale Gas Well Pad Water Use General Permits In Bradford, Cameron, Centre, Lycoming, Sullivan, Susquehanna, Tioga Counties  [PaEN]

-- DEP Posted 62 Pages Of Permit-Related Notices In August 26 PA Bulletin  [PaEN]

NewsClips This Week - Natural Gas:

-- TribLive: Environmental Advocates Weight In On State Dept. Of Health, Pitt Study Of Natural Gas Development Health Impacts

-- Capital & Main - Audrey Carleton: PA Residents Call For Action After Pitt Study Links Natural Gas Development To Asthma, Childhood Lymphoma

-- Post-Gazette Letter: We Now Know How Bad Natural Gas Development Is For Children - By Dr. Edward Ketyer, Physicians For Social Responsibility PA

-- Inquirer - Will Bunch: Does Anyone Care About The Study Linking PA Natural Gas Development To Cancer In Kids?

-- TribLive Editorial: Studies Of Natural Gas Development Point To Health Costs

-- Scranton Times Editorial: Give Teeth To Environmental Justice Policy

-- Observer-Reporter: State, County Elected Leaders Take Proactive Steps To Ban Oil, Gas Wastewater Injection Wells

-- The Derrick - Makayla Keating: DEP Cites Petro Erie With 5 Additional Violations [For More Leaking Conventional Oil Well Wastewater Tanks In Sugarcreek Boro, Venango County, Near Contaminated Reno Water Supply]  [PDF of article]

-- The Derrick: No Word Yet On When Do Not Consume Water Advisory Will Be Lifted For The Village Of Reno Water Supply Contaminated By Conventional Oil Well Wastewater In Venango County  [PDF of article]

-- The Derrick - Letter To Editor: Disappointed In Lack Of Involvement In Sen. Hutchinson, Rep. James To Resolve Village Of Reno Water Contamination Issue In Venango County [Polluted By Conventional Oil Well Wastewater Spill]   [PDF of Article

-- TribLive: DEP Examining ‘Pinhole Leak’ In A Penneco Natural Gas Gathering Line Behind Homes That Exploded In Plum Boro, Allegheny County  [PUC, DEP Have No Statutory Authority To Regulate Safety Of Gathering Pipelines]

-- Inquirer - Frank Kummer: LNG Natural Gas Export Facility Proposed In Chester Draws Pushback: ‘We Suffer For Everybody Else’s Comfort’

-- The Center Square - Anthony Hennen: ‘We Suffer For Everybody’s Else’s Comfort’ Critics Of LNG Natural Gas Export Hub Say

-- WHYY: Chester Residents Unite Against Philly LNG Natural Gas Task Force Proposal: ‘We Will Not Allow This Environmental Genocide’

-- PA Capital-Star: Advocates Vow To Fight LNG Natural Gas Export Facility In Delaware County’s Poorest community

-- Inquirer: LNG Natural Gas Plant Could Bring Millions To Bankrupt Chester, Leaders, Residents Say No Thanks

-- Broad & Liberty Guest Essay: Federal Permitting Reform Critical In Making Pennsylvania Leading Player In Exporting Liquid Natural Gas - By Jon Anzur, PA Chamber of Business & Industry

-- Pittsburgh Business Times: Business Advocates: Lack Of PA Permitting Reform Is Costing Jobs 

-- City & State PA: Business Leaders, Lawmakers Hope For Bipartisan Action On Permitting Reform

-- The Center Square: Permitting Reformers Say Make State Permits More Like Pizzas

-- Inside Climate News - Jon Hurdle: Appalachian Economy Sees Few Gains From Natural Gas Development, Report Says

Related Articles This Week - Natural Gas:

-- Lawsuit Filed Against General Assembly, Governor Challenges Constitutionality Of Law Preventing DEP From Protecting Public Health, Environment From Harm Caused By Abandoning Conventional Oil & Gas Wells  [PaEN]

-- 150+ Residents Of Chester Opposed To An LNG Natural Gas Export Facility Proposed In Their Community Let Their Feelings Be Known To The House Philadelphia LNG Export Task Force  [PaEN]

-- Republican Herald Editorial: Health Depends On Regulation Of Oil & Gas Development  [PaEN]

-- TribLive Editorial: Studies Of Natural Gas Development Point To Health Costs

-- Republican Rep. Krupa To Introduce Bill To Ban Oil, Gas Wastewater Injection Wells To Protect The Public From Radioactive, Toxic Materials  [PaEN]

-- Observer-Reporter: State, County Elected Leaders Take Proactive Steps To Ban Oil, Gas Wastewater Injection Wells

-- Shapiro Administration Secures Methane Detectors For Neighborhood In Plum Boro, Allegheny County Where Home Exploded  [PaEN]

-- PUC Approves 2 Penalty Settlements With Columbia Gas Totaling $1.525 Million For A House Explosion In Washington County, 2 Natural Gas Pipeline Over-Pressurization Incidents In Franklin, Clarion Counties  [PaEN]

-- US DOT Pipeline & Hazardous Materials Safety Administration Announces Proposed Rules To Reduce Risk Of Natural Gas Pipeline Over-Pressurization Incidents, Explosions  [PaEN]

-- On Demand: ReImagine Appalachia Faith In Action: Environmental Justice For All - Ensuring Equity And Benefits Across Our Most Climate-Impacted Communities  [PaEN] 

[Posted: August 22, 2023]


8/28/2023

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