|Posted:||January 31, 2019 10:27 AM|
|From:||Representative Scott Conklin|
|To:||All House members|
|Environmental violations occur every day in Pennsylvania, and cost thousands if not millions of dollars to clean up. The clean-up cost of these violations can even run into the billions if they are left unreported over longer periods of time. Unreported violations also have the potential to affect the lives of every man, woman and child in the Commonwealth, as well as the viability of Pennsylvania’s agriculture and wild life. According to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Oil and Gas reporting website, oil and gas operators in the state have amassed 20,942 violations in the past decade and the numbers are even higher when accounting for suspected violations that were never reported.
Suspected, yet unreported violations concern me the most, because they have the potential to do the most harm. The number one reason why, suspected violations are not reported is because citizens report that they were not sure who to contact regarding the suspected violation. So they simply just did not report at all. As a result numerous suspected violations have gone unreported, until the violation has cause considerable and irrevocable damage to the environment and the community.
Currently, DEP provides telephone numbers for the reporting of emergencies and general environmental violations. However, there is not a singular, easily accessible telephone number that may be utilized by Pennsylvania residents to report suspected violations of oil and gas laws, related to the extraction of oil and natural gas. It is for this reason that I am proposing that the DEP establish a telephone hotline number, 1-855-CALL-4GAS, through which any suspected oil or gas violation could be reported.
This legislation is key to doing everything possible to ensure that Pennsylvania residents and environments are kept clean and safe. Please join me in supporting this legislation.
Introduced as HB817