Senate Panel Approves Bartolotta Bill to Promote Beneficial Use of Treated Mine Water

HARRISBURG – The Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committee approved legislation today that would reduce the use of fresh water in natural gas drilling operations by promoting the use of treated mine water, according to the bill’s sponsor, Senator Camera Bartolotta (R-46).

Many natural gas companies have significantly reduced their reliance on fresh water from Pennsylvania’s rivers and streams by adopting the environmentally responsible practice of treating and reusing water for their operations. However, questions regarding liability have prevented some companies from utilizing this innovative approach for treated mine water.

Senate Bill 875 facilitates the use of this water source in oil and gas operations by clarifying liabilities associated with its use.

“Utilizing treated mine water in natural gas operations holds the potential to significantly reduce the withdrawal demands on Pennsylvania’s rivers and streams,” said Bartolotta, who serves as Vice Chair of the committee. “Questions regarding liability are the biggest barrier preventing more companies from taking advantage of this environmentally friendly process.”

The legislation would not weaken or undermine any environmental safeguards designed to protect public health, Bartolotta said.

Senate Bill 875 was sent to the full Senate for consideration.
CONTACT: Colleen Greer (717) 787-1463