Monday, January 6, 2014

Legislative Committee Reviews Landfill Waste Disposal Of Drilling Material

The W.Va. Legislature's Joint Standing Committee on the Judiciary met January 5, 2014 to discuss the depositing of drill cutting material and waste into landfills as a result of drilling activities across West Virginia.

West Virginia University (“WVU”), which had conducted a sampling of several vertical drilling sites, shared findings of a study it had done. WVU’s study provided that certain components were elevated, but not alarming.  It was suggested that additional information be collected and studied including the best way to determine how to obtain samples and how to characterize the waste.  Additionally, it was suggested that a sampling of horizontal drilling sites take place.

There was discussion about the general concern of radioactive elements within the rock being brought to the surface during drilling. While the element of radioactivity appears to be low, some thought additional studies would be beneficial.

The W.Va. Department of Environmental Protection informed the interim committee that it has plans to require a very similar approach to that which is already in place in Pennsylvania.  This approach will help with properly detecting radiation and will also improve the safety of workers at landfill sites.

Article:

Marcellus drill cuttings study falls short
Little usable data gathered on drill cuttings, waste
The Dominion Post, Jan. 6, 2014
http://thedpost.com/Marcellus-drill-cuttings-study-f