GASP is encouraged to hear the Allegheny County Health Department is considering tougher air regulations on Marcellus Shale activity.
In addition to the well-publicized danger that shale drilling operations pose to our water, there is an equally troubling risk to our air. Compressor engine exhaust, off gassing from storage tanks, and raw natural gas emissions during well completions are just a few of the many sources of air pollution associated with natural gas production. Such emissions are now causing unhealthy ozone levels in Wyoming. Given the fact that much of southwestern Pennsylvania fails to meet ozone or particulate matter standards, we can’t afford to increase the pollution burden in the air we all must breathe.
That’s why GASP has been pursuing efforts at both the state and county level to adopt tough standards to limit air pollution from this industry. For this industry a number of effective air pollution control technologies exist. What’s more, because many of these technologies reduce pollution by increasing capture of hydrocarbons during the gas production process, these controls are not only cost effective, they often pay for themselves. This demonstrates once again that a healthy environment is good for the economy.
We hope ACHD follows up on this talk with effective regulation and that PA DEP takes notice as well.