WV Legislature Will Need a Special Session to Complete Marcellus Landfill Regulations

by Duane Nichols on March 11, 2014

Fracking Waste Disposal Still A Question

Article by Glynis Board and Ashton Marra, WV Public Broadcasting, March 10, 2014

The House and Senate have spent weeks working on House Bill 4411 dealing with the disposal of hydraulic fracturing drill cuttings in land fills. Earlier in the session, the House of Delegates held a public hearing on the issue. But members could not agree on the terms of the bill and late Saturday evening it ended up in a conference committee.

The conference agreement came down to this: landfills who want to accept drill cuttings from fracking sites must apply for permits from the Department of Environmental Protection and the Public Service Commission. So far, seven are in the process of doing so.

Those seven would be the only landfills allowed to apply for the permits for two years. They must put radon detectors at their front gates to test trucks, cannot mix the drill cuttings with municipal waste and must charge a $1 fee per ton they accept. The first $750 thousand collected will go toward a study on the waste due to the Joint Committee on Government and Finance next year.

That agreement, however, did not make it to the clerks’ desks in time to be put to a vote and the bill died, leaving no legislative restrictions on these cuttings and their disposal.

See also the very informative Video Clip in this Article.


W.Va. bill to regulate gas drilling waste on hold

From an Article of the Associated Press (Charleston Gazette), March 10, 2014

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — A bill to regulate the disposal of waste produced by gas-well drilling will likely be introduced by West Virginia Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin in a special session. Lawmakers who negotiated a version both sides could agree on were unable to get the measure passed before midnight Saturday, the deadline for the regular session.

The bill would allow only seven landfills in West Virginia that have already applied to do so to create a separate area on their properties where they could store the waste. Those landfills are located in the Northern Panhandle and Northwest portion of the state.

Sen. Herb Snyder, D-Jefferson, said the bill is a huge environmental protection for the state. As it stands, the measure calls for drillings to be separated from other waste and monitored for radioactivity. “By September of this year, the waste cannot be mixed with other trash and must be put in a separate cell, and radioactivity monitors add a tremendous amount of protection over what is being done today,” said Snyder. “We have learned a lot by looking at what was done in Pennsylvania and looking at the problems they were having.’ Snyder said the studies will examine what types of metals are in the waste in addition to their level of radioactivity.

Currently, in depth studies on drilling waste have not been conducted in West Virginia. Snyder said some Department of Environmental Protection studies were conducted after the Natural Gas Horizontal Well Act; however, the Legislature determined these studies were incomplete and not sufficient, he said.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

C. W. Paul March 12, 2014 at 9:32 am

WV Public Broadcasting was in Wetzel County a few weeks ago and filmed this video.

The Secretary of DEP is allowing approved landfills to exceed their monthly tonnage caps, our own S&S Landfill and Meadowfill included, and the Marcellus Horizontal drilling waste was never tested, so stated by West Virginia University’s Water Research Institute Director Paul Ziemkiewicz. 

Folks speak like all is good and the trucks don’t stop going to and from the landfills, yet the only study was on the vertical drill cuttings only.  

This is serious stuff, C. W. Paul


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