PLEASE SIGN THE PETITION CALLING ON GOVERNOR JOSH SHAPIRO TO REVOKE THE CYCLONE INJECTION WELL PERMIT
Please sign this petition calling on Pennsylvania's Governor Josh Shapiro to take action to protect the environment and the health and safety of the residents of Cyclone by directing the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to REVOKE the Catalyst Energy, Inc. UIC Class II Disposal Well permit.
Petition link here
The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) erred by authorizing Catalyst Energy Inc. Class II-D injection well permit API 37-083-46237 in the absence of due diligence by DEP during the permit review.
On May 10, 2023, Catalyst Energy Inc. (Catalyst, or Applicant), submitted an application to the DEP to change the use of the gas well in Cyclone ( API Permit Number 37-083-46237) from a gas well to a Class II-D commercial brine disposal injection well (Injection Well).
The DEP did not hold a public comment period, public hearing or public meeting on the Cyclone Class II D Injection well permit citing lack of public interest, instead DEP agreed to a conference. More than 60 people attended the September 26, 2023 conference which was held at the Hilltop Volunteer Fire Dept. at 4351 Rt. 646 in Cyclone.The vast majority of attendees were clearly opposed to the injection well and residents raised many concerns.
Cyclone residents believed this conference was an opportunity for public comment where their concerns surrounding this project would be heard and addressed. This was not the case, although Catalyst and DEP listened to the locals, their concerns remain unaddressed by DEP.
These include numerous, compelling concerns that were brought to DEP's attention by local residents who once worked on these very wells in Cyclone, including the recently permitted Catalyst Energy Inc. Class II-D injection well.
And it was during that conference, a local resident, Dennis Johnson, held up a large map from 1937 showing DEP officials the recorded locations of hundreds of historic wells.
Above, crop of the 1937 oil field map showing the area of the village.
This map identifies the locations of a large number of wells that are not included in any of the DEP’s databases, online oil and gas well map or the injection well application. The map recorded locations of 103 historic wells within ¼ (AOR) mile of the injection well. The whole Tide Water Oil Co map is available online here.
"They did not seem very concerned" said Jeffrey Eshbaugh, a resident of Cyclone who was in attendance. "DEP or Catalyst didn't even ask for a copy" of the map.
After the conference Susan Price the Geologist who attended the conference addressed one (and only one) of their concerns by requiring Catalyst to hang a notice in the post office prior to injecting waste. The DEP Lot 580-1 Record of Decision Memo is online here.
A piece of paper hanging in the post office will not minimize the risks cyclone residents brought to DEP's attention. This permit needs to be REVOKED.
The locations, depths and conditions of a large number of the old wells in and around Cyclone remain a mystery to DEP, however on January 11, 2023 the DEP authorized a Class II D injection well permit.
Above the two homes that exploded in McKean County in 2010 & 2011
The stakes are high. Abandoned wells may and often do allow natural gas and other fluids to travel from deep formations to the aquifer and to the surface. Abandoned wells in rare instances have caused explosions and deaths. More here: 'Stray Natural Gas Migration Associated with Oil and Gas Wells' here. After that report was released, two more homes in McKean County exploded. More info here & here.
Many of the area residents of Cyclone have fracked, operated and plugged the wells in the Cyclone oil and gas field over the past decades. They have direct knowledge of the condition of the wells.
According to the DEP Oil and Gas Map, many wells in the area have been plugged.
Modern regulations require placing cement in the wellbore through the water, gas and oil-producing zones. The spaces between the cement plugs are often filled (within the wellbore) with bentonite gel.
The following graphic is from page 85 of a Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) document titled Geologic Carbon Sequestration Opportunities in Pennsylvania. Available online here.
Although this graphic is intended to show the pathways and potential risks associated with geological sequestration of CO2, If the DCNR is correct and there are in fact potential pathways as illustrated in the department's graphic, it's certainly conceivable these same pathways would also be available for pressurized injected waste and explosive gasses.
The following warning is from page 86 of that DCNR document:
The residents of Cyclone have a constitutional right to live in a safe environment free from the very real risks posed by living in close proximity of historic wells, the condition and depths of many remain unknown to regulators.
The citizens of Pennsylvania should not be forced, by their government, to live worrying if toxic chemicals known to be present in frack waste will contaminate their water supplies or migrating methane will cause their homes to explode.
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Cyclone Fracking Disposal Well Video
Cyclone Fracking Disposal Well Approved by DEP: https://wesb.com/2024/01/23/cyclone-fracking-disposal-well approved-by-dep/ Andy Paulsen Jan 23, 2024 | 11:19 AM
Click here for Catalyst Energy document listing
CONTINUED ACTION NEEDED!
On November 29, 2023 people from all over PA reminded Governor Shapiro of Article 1 Section 27 of the PA constitution (detailed on the left) by calling the governor's office and reading it , X or Tweeting and sending it on Instagram.
ARTICLE 1, SECTION 27 CALL-IN DAY
CALL/TEXT GOVERNOR SHAPIRO
Governor Shapiro’s recent deal with CNX is just the latest indication that he needs to be reminded that we have a constitutional right to a healthy environment in Pennsylvania! On November 29, we’re asking everyone to help us remind him by calling his office and reading the amendment.
He’s been boasting that there’s ‘no wrong door’ to government officials (except when we get there and the door is closed with an armed Capitol Police officer in front of it). To prove how accessible he is, he’s started advertising a text number you can use to message him. We’ll take advantage of that too!
And we’ll be posting to his Twitter/X and Instagram accounts that day, as well.
So here’s how we plan to make sure his phone is ringing all day. We’re asking people to commit to calling during a specific hour between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. We invite you to make calls or send texts at other times that day or to participate more than once during the day. The more the merrier!! BUT we want to make sure we have lots of people signed up for each hour.
We need to continue to pressure our elected officials to do the jobs they were elected to do!
Here’s what you need to know to participate -
Article 1, Section 27 - Natural resources and the public estate.
The people have a right to clean air, pure water, and to the preservation of the natural, scenic, historic and esthetic values of the environment. Pennsylvania's public natural resources are the common property of all the people, including generations yet to come. As trustee of these resources, the Commonwealth shall conserve and maintain them for the benefit of all the people.
Governor Shapiro contact info:
Office phone number - 717-787-2500
Text number - 717-788-8990
Twitter account - @GovernorShapiro
Instagram account - @governorshapiro
Learn more with this toolkit: https://docs.google.com/document/d/195j6j7WyOQKB1fKcorxLbm-z-gqRmbrAZv9eawIUH-Q/edit?usp=sharing
Hellbent Panel: Chad Nicholson discusses the legal and organizing strategy to stop a frack-waste injection well
Hellbent tells the story of Grant Township, PA's epic fight to prevent a fracking waste injection well from being built in their community.
The moderated discussion covered how the film came together, the community’s legal and organizing strategies, the Hellbender salamander's role in the ecosystem, and ways to support the East Run Hellbenders' ongoing advocacy.
You can watch the replay of the panel discussion and the short, 19-minute Hellbent documentary here
The Invisible Hand
The DEP Needs Your Help!
Pennsylvania is poised to receive the first installment of the Federal Infrastructure Investment Act Funding which is being administered by the Department of Interior. These funds are intended to plug orphan wells. Pennsylvania recently sent the DOI a list of wells to plug with the initial grant. However according to the DEP's Orphan Well Plugging Program this list was compiled over 30 years ago!
Volunteers are needed to visit these wells, obtain GPS coordinates and photographs because many of the wells have not been inspected by regulators in many years. If you're interested in volunteering please visit the following links for approximate locations of the wells. According to the DEP the recorded locations could be as much as 2000' from the actual location. Visit the map here to see wells near you!
Is Drilling and Fracking Waste on Your Sidewalk or in Your Pool?
They’ve spread it on roads. They’ve irrigated almond farms and fruit groves with it. The oil and gas industry’s liquid waste has been used for a variety of commercial and industrial purposes over the years. But never has the “beneficial use” of this waste stream been so grossly applied, or so close to home, as it is today.
Interior Department Releases Implementation Guidance to States on Infrastructure Law Efforts to Address Legacy Pollution
Grant criteria reflects swift progress on efforts to plug orphan wells
WASHINGTON — The Department of the Interior today released initial guidance for states interested in applying for federal grants that will fund the proper closure and cleanup of orphaned oil and gas wells and well sites, a key investment of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. The law includes $4.7 billion for orphaned well site plugging, remediation, and restoration activities. Separate guidance will be shared with Tribes for additional targeted resources, as well as notices for nation-to-nation consultation, in the coming weeks.
“The Interior Department is committed to helping working families, often in rural and Tribal communities, who face hazardous pollution, toxic water levels, and land subsidence both during energy development and long after extractive companies have moved on,” said Secretary Deb Haaland. “The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law's historic investments will help revitalize these local economies and support jobs, all while addressing environmental impacts from these legacy developments.” Read more