HARRISBURG, Pa. -- The Department of Environmental Protection Wednesday released its inaugural oil and gas annual report that said in 2013 it issued 4,617 permits to drill wells in 2013 including "unconventional" wells, 17 of which were in Mercer County and 12 in Lawrence County.
"This report illustrates the great progress we have made in protecting our environment through increased inspections, tougher regulations and improved oversight of this industry," said Secretary E. Christopher Abruzzo in a prepared statement.
The report was begun to provide information and insights into how the department's oil and gas program is fulfilling the mission of the department mission to protect Pennsylvania's air, land and water from pollution and to provide for the health and safety of residents of the commonwealth. The report provides information on program structure and processes, permitting, inspections, compliance and enforcement, regulatory and policy developments, and program innovations.
"It is hard to imagine that less than five years ago, most Pennsylvanians were unfamiliar with terms such as 'Marcellus shale' and 'hydraulic fracturing,' " Abruzzo wrote in the introduction. "Today, most of us are not only familiar with these terms, but many have witnessed the steady transformation of this state into the second-largest natural gas producing state in the nation. We are in the midst of an energy revolution that is bringing new jobs to Pennsylvania, spawning new economic development and growth, and providing energy security to our nation."
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Copyright 2014 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.
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