Beside the Governor’s Proposed Budget Address, the big news in Harrisburg this week was the passage of a major Marcellus Shale legislative package.
According to an article in the Pittsburgh Tribune Review, after more than three years of political debate and seven years into the shale gas rush, state legislators passed a comprehensive set of rules for the industry, including a fee on drilling and standards for municipal land use that may keep the fight going. Drillers will have to start paying between $190,000 and $355,000 per well over 15 years starting from 2011, depending on the price of natural gas, under the bill’s language. The 174-page bill creates sweeping reforms, including new disclosure standards for the chemicals used to tap the gas, lengthened setbacks to keep wells more distant from homes and waterways, and standards for emergency containment.
Click here to read the Pittsburgh Tribune Review article.