PA DEP Extends Public Comment Period for Proposed Oil and Gas Regulations, Adds Two Hearings

DEP Sec. Chris Abruzzo said 90 hearings in 90 days is unheard of - and said public input is important to the process.

DEP Sec. Chris Abruzzo said 9 hearings in 90 days is unheard of – and said public input is important to the process.

Editor’s Note: The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection on Wednesday released the following press release on its website. -amanda

The Department of Environmental Protection and the Environmental Quality Board announced Wednesday that the public comment period and series of public hearings on the proposed oil and gas surface activities regulation have been extended.

“One of the clear messages we’ve been getting through this hearing and comment process, from both industry and environmental groups, is that we should hold additional hearings and extend the comment period,” DEP Secretary Chris Abruzzo said. “Public participation is a key component when crafting these regulations, and we are happy to accommodate this extended period.”

The public comment period, originally scheduled to end on Feb. 12 is extended for 30 days to March 14.

Two additional public hearings will also be held, both beginning at 6 p.m, at these locations:

• Feb. 10: Troy High School, 150 High St., Troy, PA 16947
• Feb. 12: Warren County Courthouse, 204 4th Ave., Warren, PA 16365

“Nine public hearings and a total of 90 days for public comment is unprecedented – we are committed to understanding the concerns of all Pennsylvanians on this important state regulation,” Abruzzo said.

The hearings are being held by the EQB for the purpose of accepting comments on a proposed regulation for environmental protection performance standards associated with oil and gas activities.

The EQB is a 20-member independent board that adopts all DEP regulations and considers petitions to change regulations.

For more information on how to submit comments or how to sign up to make comments at one of the upcoming hearings, click here.

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