The Department of Environmental Protection’s longtime head of oil and gas operations today takes on a new role.
DEP spokesman John Poister on Tuesday said Alan Eichler is now the manager of the department’s southwestern Pennsylvania Safe Drinking Water program after serving 28 years in the oil and gas division.
Poister said the move would likely give Eichler a “little change of pace.”
Nobody has yet been tapped to replace Eichler’s position in the oil and gas division, Poister said.
Some background on Eichler: Despite major public outcry for more information on public safety and other issues regarding a Cecil frac pond last year, Eichler headed a meeting with township supervisors behind closed doors, and even snarked about the move in internal correspondence.
In an email dated July 18, 2013, Eichler wrote to DEP staff about the meeting called to address safety concerns at the pit. DEP officials claimed the meeting did not need to be made public because it was a “conference.” The state’s Sunshine Law governing open meetings indicates that conferences may be closed to the public:
We should be thinking about potential questions that are going to be asked at the August 9 meeting…uh, I mean conference (it’s not a meeting).