HARRISBURG – A proposal introduced by Senator Camera Bartolotta (R-46) to reduce the use of fresh water in oil and gas drilling operations was signed into law today.
Act 47 clarifies legal liabilities associated with the use of treated mine water in oil and gas operations. The use of treated mine water holds the potential to significantly reduce the withdrawal demand on Pennsylvania rivers, lakes and streams.
A number of oil and gas companies already use treated mine water in place of fresh water in the natural gas extraction process, but concerns regarding liability issues have prevented many companies from utilizing this approach.
“It is imperative for lawmakers to support efforts to protect our environment and develop our natural resources safely and responsibly,” Bartolotta said. “The use of treated mine water by natural gas companies is an innovative approach that will help preserve millions of gallons of fresh water, and I am thankful that more companies will have the freedom to explore this option.”
Bartolotta, who serves as Vice Chair of the Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committee, emphasized that the new law does not weaken any existing environmental safeguards designed to protect public health. It only clarifies parties that could be held responsible if the mine water is not treated or utilized properly.
CONTACT: Katrina Anderson (717) 787-1463