FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
files right-to-know request with DEP regarding
Range waste impoundment in Cecil
CECIL TOWNSHIP, April 8 Ė State Rep. Jesse White filed a right-to-know request with the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection on Friday in an effort to ascertain the circumstances leading to a natural gas drilling impoundmentís reclassification from a freshwater impoundment to a hazardous waste site.
It also was reported last week that in September, DEP officials and representatives from Range Resources discussed the impoundment, and a possible leak there, in a private meeting. According to the same report, Cecil Township supervisors and residents were never made aware of the meeting or the reclassification of the impoundment, located off Swihart Road.
"Questions need answered about the Worstell Impoundment, and fast," said White, D-Washington/Allegheny/Beaver. "Why was Cecil never made aware of the conversion of this impoundment to a wastewater dumping ground? Where is all this waste coming from, and whatís in it? What are the details of the leak that DEP representative John Poister said occurred, and were any violations issued? What did DEP and Range discuss on this issue in their closed-door meeting last September?"
Whiteís open-records request asks DEP to provide documentation relating to the impoundment, including:
∑ Permitting information on the Worstell Impoundment;
∑ Information on the decision to convert from a freshwater to wastewater centralized impoundment;
∑ Records of all waste taken into the Worstell Impoundment, including the source wells;
∑ Raw testing data and quality assurance/quality control data including but not limited to air and water testing relating to the Worstell Impoundment;
∑ Information on any leaks at the Worstell Impoundment, either discovered by DEP or disclosed by a third party;
∑ Meeting minutes and/or information on record from the Sept. 26, 2012 meeting between officials from Range Resources, DEP and CEC Inc.;
∑ Correspondence including letters, faxes, emails and phone logs from the attendees of the Sept. 26 meeting dealing in any way with the Worstell Impoundment;
∑ Correspondence between DEP and Range Resources Appalachia LLC relating to the Worstell Impoundment;
∑ Citations and/or notices of violations issued by DEP regarding the Worstell Impoundment.
"I have contacted several DEP officials to seek information and let them know I am available to discuss this issue," White said. "But based on their track record, it looks like the only way weíre going to get to the bottom of this is if DEP releases these documents under a public Right to Know request. This isnít a witch hunt; Cecil Township and its residents simply deserve to find out whatís happening in their own backyards without any lies, word games or industry spin."
"If nothing else, this issue clearly illustrates the importance of the Act 13 case currently pending in state Supreme Court. They want to build these impoundments in residential areas and never tell anyone about what they are or when they go wrong. Thatís not the definition of being a 'good neighbor' like Range often claims. Thatís being a bully who shows zero respect for our communities."
CONTACT: Jim Strine