water puts people to work and strengthens our economies,” Baker said. “We call on the opposition tocease their attempts to derail the clean-up efforts, lay aside expensive litigation, and roll up their sleevesand work with us for clean rivers and streams across the region.”Jim Abernathy, interim president and chief executive officer of PennFuture, says "PennFuture is pleased that the court has upheld EPA's authority to issue the plan that will clean up polluted rivers andstreams in Pennsylvania and the Chesapeake Bay."“Everyone -- farmers and homeowners, rural and urban -- all realize clean water is vital to their community and to their economy. Midshore Riverkeeper Conservancy joined this lawsuit to representthe voice of rural areas and small towns. We don’t know what purpose this suit was meant to serve butit was not in most people’s interests,” said Tim Junkin, Midshore Riverkeeper executive director. “Weare thrilled that EPA has prevailed. It is a critical time and the clean water blueprint offers a newapproach and requires that everyone does their fair share to clean up our local waters.”“The court’s decision is great news for fish and wildlife that depend on a healthy Bay for their survival. If implemented properly, the rule has the potential to significantly improve the ecological healthof the Bay for the benefit of wildlife and people alike,” said Michael Senatore, Vice President for Conservation Law at Defenders of Wildlife.Click Hereto see how Pennsylvania is doing in meeting its Chesapeake Bay cleanupcommitments.
Attorney General Files Criminal Charges Against XTO Energy Drilling Company
TheAttorney General's OfficeTuesday announced charges against a Pennsylvania subsidiary of ExxonMobil for illegally discharging more than 50,000 gallons of toxic wastewater from a MarcellusShale gas well site in Penn Township, Lycoming County.Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane identified the company as XTO Energy Inc., 395 AirportRoad, Indiana, Pa. Evidence and testimony was presented to a statewide investigating grand jury, whichrecommended the criminal charges being filed.XTO owns the Marquardt well site in Penn Township, which contains two natural gas wells onthe site. During natural gas extraction, these wells produce waste water containing toxic substances,such as chlorides, barium, strontium and aluminum. XTO allegedly stored this waste water in21,000-gallon storage tanks at the Marquardt site for subsequent processing.The grand jury found that XTO hired a company to recycle waste water at the Marquardt sitefrom Nov. 4, 2010 through Nov. 11, 2010. After that one-week period, XTO directed that companyto remove their processing equipment from the site and transport it to another XTO well site in WestVirginia.However, XTO allegedly continued to transport and store gas well waste water at theMarquardt site despite not having the proper equipment on site to safely store or process it.The illegal discharge of gas well waste water was discovered on Nov. 16, 2010, when aninspector with the Department of Environmental Protection made an unannounced visit to the Marquardtsite.According to the grand jury, during that visit a DEP inspector discovered that a rear dischargevalve on a storage tank had been opened and a drain plug had been removed, causing gas well wastewater to flow out of the storage tank onto the ground. There also was evidence of prior waste water