Statement on EPA Announcement on Wastewater Guidelines

Statement on EPA Announcement on Wastewater Guidelines

“We agree with Administrator Jackson that the needs of our energy future should be met safely and responsibly. America’s wastewater has been managed under the federal Clean Water Act in partnership with state regulators since 1972. EPA’s action to develop new standards for these discharges is an ongoing part of its Clean Water Act responsibilities. The new guidelines EPA develops will then be used by states to regulate specific wastewater discharges.

“We stand ready to work with EPA and other stakeholders on the development of these guidelines.

“As the EPA notes, wastewater from shale gas development cannot be discharged into waterways, and the underground disposal of wastewater has been federally regulated by the EPA for nearly four decades. Moreover, no wastewater resulting from shale gas development is currently discharged untreated into surface waters.

“This is why the oil and gas industry continues to increase the amount of wastewater that it recycles, improving from near zero percent just a few years ago to nearly 100 percent in the Marcellus shale.

“Most importantly, no wastewater can be discharged without a permit, and until these new guidelines are developed, tight regulation at the state level will continue to allow for the safe and responsible development of America’s shale gas resources, using the same best-available, economically achievable technologies that EPA will use for its new guidelines.”

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Julia Bell