Rover Pipeline sediment pollutes adjoining land area

EQT Production fined for polluting Monongahela River with mine water

From an Article by Joe Napsha, Pittsburgh Tribune Review, November 13, 2018

A natural gas drilling company was fined $294,000 by the state for polluting the Monongahela River last year with about 4 million gallons of mine water when it punctured an abandoned mine as it was boring underneath Route 136 in Forward Township to install a pipe to carry fresh water for a drilling site.

The Department of Environmental Protection in Pittsburgh said Tuesday EQT Production Co. in Cecil paid the fine as part of a consent order and agreement covering violations of the Clean Streams Law in Allegheny County.

According to the DEP, EQT inadvertently pierced the abandoned Gallatin mine on January 17, 2017 as it was boring a hole underneath Route 136 to install a pipeline from the Monongahela River to its Rostosky drilling site in Forward Township, Allegheny County. It took EQT until Jan. 31 to stop the discharge through the waterline borehole to unnamed tributaries of the Monongahela River and associated wetlands.

EQT was aware when it applied for permits in July 2016 there were several abandoned coal mines in the area, the DEP said. EQT relied on regional mapping that generally described mine pools as “not flooded or unknown” but did not undertake any further investigation. There were seeps of orange water near the area of the waterline borehole.

Since the incident, EQT has constructed a collection and drainage system similar to what was in place when the water was discharged. EQT also agreed to establish a $100,000 fund with the Clean Streams Foundation to provide for the maintenance, operation, and replacement of the system.

In September, Commonweath Court upheld a $1.1 million fine levied against EQT Production’s parent company, EQT Corp. of Pittsburgh, for violating state environmental laws by failing to prevent significant contamination from a fracking water holding pond in Tioga County six years ago.

The state Environmental Hearing Board found that water from the drilling site in Tioga County continued to pollute area groundwater, even after the company emptied the pond.

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ROVER natural gas pipeline agrees to pay $430,000 penalty for water pollution violations

From an Article by Kate Mishkin, Charleston Gazette, June 12, 2018

Rover Pipeline LLC has agreed to pay the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection $430,000 for water pollution violations in the state, according to a consent order made public Tuesday.

The natural gas pipeline project and the WV-DEP made the deal May 15, documents show, but the public comment period for the consent order ends July 13.

The agreement is in response to notices of violation and cease-and-desist orders issued to Rover Pipeline dating back to April 2017, said Jake Glance, spokesman for the DEP. In all, the pipeline has received 18 notices of violation and two cease-and-desist orders, the most recent of which was issued on March 5, when the regulators said crews left trash and construction partially buried on site and failed to clean the roads around the construction site.

The DEP also issued a cease-and-desist order in July 2017 for similar violations.

Rover is just one of the major pipelines being built to tap into the region’s natural gas boom. Last month, the Mountain Valley Pipeline, another pipeline project, also received a violation notice from the DEP for violating water quality standards — problems environmental and citizen groups warned might happen.

“What Rover shows us is that pipelines do have water quality impacts and when you layer the steep terrain and the complex hydrology … you’re getting into uncharted territory and we fear we’re going to see more problems and possibly even worse than we see with Rover,” Rosser said. “We hope it’s not in repeated nature we’ve seen with Rover.”

The $430,000 agreed-upon penalty is substantial, but it’s a small sliver of the project’s $4 billion budget, she said. Plus, the DEP spends money to monitor the pipelines and inspect construction sites.

“So $430,000, I would suppose a great deal of that went to cover DEP’s ability to provide the oversight. And then you’ve got a hundred sites where the streams have been polluted, and how can you put a dollar figure on that?” Rosser said. “The chemistry of the streams has been changed and can’t be reversed to how they were.”

Construction on the pipeline was “essentially complete,” and the company is working with the DEP to finalize the settlement, a spokeswoman for the company said.

The consent order references violations dating back to April 2017, including failing to control erosion and keeping sediment water from leaving construction sites.

“The good news that I see is that [the] DEP was on top of it, that they did a good job documenting multiple violations and it shows the importance of oversight of these projects because this company did not appear to be acting in good faith,” said Angie Rosser, executive director of the West Virginia Rivers Coalition.

Energy Transfer Partners, Rover Pipeline’s owner, also owns the Dakota Access Pipeline — the subject of protests and heightened attention over its being built in North Dakota.

The 713-mile-long Rover Pipeline will move natural gas from processing plants in West Virginia, Ohio and Pennsylvania. Crews are building the pipeline in Doddridge, Tyler and Wetzel counties in West Virginia.

Rover is just one of the major pipelines being built to tap into the region’s natural gas boom. Last month, the Mountain Valley Pipeline, another pipeline project, also received a violation notice from the DEP for violating water quality standards — problems environmental and citizen groups warned might happen.

“What Rover shows us is that pipelines do have water quality impacts and when you layer the steep terrain and the complex hydrology … you’re getting into uncharted territory and we fear we’re going to see more problems and possibly even worse than we see with Rover,” Rosser said. “We hope it’s not in repeated nature we’ve seen with Rover.”

The $430,000 agreed-upon penalty is substantial, but it’s a small sliver of the project’s $4 billion budget, she said. Plus, the DEP spends money to monitor the pipelines and inspect construction sites.

“So $430,000, I would suppose a great deal of that went to cover DEP’s ability to provide the oversight. And then you’ve got a hundred sites where the streams have been polluted, and how can you put a dollar figure on that?” Rosser said. “The chemistry of the streams has been changed and can’t be reversed to how they were.”

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Dilles Bottom is in a deep valley with many residential areas nearby

Ohio EPA seeks input on draft air permit for proposed PTTGCA Cracker Plant to be located in BELMONT COUNTY, Ohio

From an Article of WTOV News 9, Steubenville, OH, November 10, 2018

The Ohio EPA is asking for input regarding the draft air permit for the potential construction of a billion-dollar ethane cracker plant in Belmont County.

The cracker plant would be built in Dilles Bottom. (This is in the Ohio River valley directly across the river from Moundsville in Marshall County, West Virginia.)

If approved, the permit would allow construction of the PTTGCA Petrochemical Complex that would use six ethane cracking furnaces and manufacture ethylene and polyethylene.

The EPA says different gases and pollutants could be emitted, however, its goal is to ensure air quality, and the maximum air emissions would be limited.

There will be a public hearing hosted by the Ohio EPA at 6 p.m. on November 27 at Shadyside High School to discuss the air permit.

The permit application may be viewed online here by entering permit number P0124972 or at the Ohio EPA Southeast District Office, 2195 Front St., Logan. See the PDF version of the draft air permit here. Call for an appointment: (740) 380-5245.

Ohio EPA values public input. Comments will be accepted both verbally and in writing at the hearing and may be submitted through December 11, 2018.

Written comments may be sent by mail to Kimbra Reinbold, Ohio EPA, DAPC Southeast District Office, 2195 East Front Street, Logan, Ohio, 43138 or emailed to kimbra.reinbold@epa.ohio.gov.

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PTTGCA Petrochemical Plant Complex — Permit Description

Initial installation permit for a world-scale petrochemical complex composed of ethylene and ethylene-based derivative plants to manufacture high-density polyethylene (HDPE) and linear low-density polyethylene/HDPE (LLDPE/HDPE) with the following design capacities: Ethylene Plant: 1,500 KT/year; HDPE Units: two (2) trains of 350 KT/year for each train; and LLDPE/HDPE Units: two (2) trains of 450 KT/year for each train. The petrochemical complex will also involve onsite railcar and truck loading, supporting utilities, infrastructure, storage tanks, logistics facilities, and facilities to produce and/or provide required natural gas, water, air, nitrogen, steam, and electricity to support the operation of process units.

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Wildfires are Now More Destructive than Ever — Climate Change is Involved

November 14, 2018

‘Unfit Leader’: Neil Young Loses Home to Fire, Rips Trump for Insensitive Tweet From an Article by Lorraine Chow, EcoWatch.com, November 12, 2018 Musician Neil Young, who lost his Malibu home to the devastating Woolsey fire, is urging the world to come together to fight climate change—especially since the president of the U.S. seems “unfit” [...]

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ACP and MVP are Polluting the Land and Streams in West Virginia

November 13, 2018

Pipelines repeatedly cited by state regulators for environmental issues From an Article by Kate Mishkin, Charleston Gazette, November 8, 2018 As battles over two major natural gas pipelines play out in court, state regulators have continued to cite the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and Mountain Valley Pipeline for environmental problems. The Mountain Valley Pipeline has received [...]

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CLIMATE CHANGE ACTION — One of the Biggest Stories Ever Told

November 12, 2018

UN climate report author: ambitious actions needed to slow global warming Interview by David Nutt, Atkinson Center, Cornell University, October 18, 2018 In March 2017, Natalie Mahowald, professor of earth and atmospheric sciences and the Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future’s faculty director for the environment, was selected by the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on [...]

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Fracking Continues to Pollute in Spite of Technical Changes

November 11, 2018

Before going public, USWS signs new electric frack fleet deals From Luke Geiver, North American Shale Magazine, October 31, 2018 U.S. Well Services has expanded from West Texas to South Texas with its unique frack fleet offering. The Houston-based firm announced this week it will work with an operator in the Eagle Ford and provide [...]

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West Virginia Environmental Council seeks Lobby Proposal for 2019 Legislative Session

November 10, 2018

West Virginia Environmental Council, P.O. Box 1007, Charleston WV 25324 The WV Environmental Council (WVEC) is seeking lobbying proposals for full time legislative lobbying during the 2019 regular Legislative Session, which runs from January 9th through March 9th, 2019. Please include in your proposal the number of hours per day, week, or month to which [...]

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More Large & Long Distance Pipeline$ are Deeper in Trouble

November 9, 2018

Dirty Pipelines Are Bad Investments and a Reputational Risk for Banks From an Article by Leola Abraham, Greenpeace (EcoWatch.com), November 7, 2018 More than 400,000 people demanded Credit Suisse stop investing in environmentally harmful projects like pipelines and tar sands. Growing Resistance to Large & Long Distance Pipelines The banking industry should stop funding extreme [...]

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Proposition 112 was Defeated, but Colorado’s New Governor is Aware of Climate Change

November 8, 2018

Colorado’s New Governor Has Most Ambitious Renewables Goal in U.S. From an Article by Lorraine Chow, EcoWatch.com, November 7, 2018 Democratic Colorado Governor-elect Jared Polis arrives onstage with running mate Dianne Primavera on November 6th in Denver. Jared Polis, who won Colorado’s gubernatorial race to become the nation’s first openly gay governor-elect, is charting the [...]

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Can FERC Leadership Be Trusted With The Public Interest?

November 7, 2018

. . . . . . . . New FERC head pledges to avoid political influence From an Article by Timothy Cama, The Hill, October 31, 2018 The newly minted chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) says he is committing to keeping the agency neutral and avoiding political influence. Neil Chatterjee, a Republican, [...]

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