Friday, July 19, 2013

DOJ Wins Consent Settlement With Exxon's XTO For Violating Clean Water Act In PA

This might surprise some who wrongly think that the gas drilling industry is exempt from the Clean Water Act.

Yesterday, the United States Department of Justice and Environmental Protection Agency won a consent decree with Exxon's XTO gas drilling affiliate for allowing drilling wastewater spill from tanks and reach a tributary of the Susquehanna River.   The spill of pollutants that reached the stream and that violated the Clean Water Act.

Here is the EPA release:  

The case began in November 2010, when an inspector of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, was inspecting an XTO facility, where it stored drilling wastewater.  The state DEP inspector saw open valves on tanks that allowed drilling wastewater to pour out.

The terms of the consent settlement are model best practices and should be made regulatory requirements by federal and state agencies.  You can read the terms of the consent decree here:

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