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Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Earthjustice.org

How do you like this quote: " Our mountains, rivers and wildlife belong to all and so too must the power of justice belong to all those who desire to protect our nation's natural treasures. Working together, we will continue holding accountable those who would harm the environment and our communities, and we will continue to ensure that the earth has a good lawyer.Our mountains, rivers and wildlife belong to all and so too must the power of justice belong to all those who desire to protect our nation's natural treasures. Working together, we will continue holding accountable those who would harm the environment and our communities, and we will continue to ensure that the earth has a good lawyer."

No bad, huh?  That from the front page of Earthjustice a group we will be talking about tomorrow on our live radio show (stream is still set to WARL, former call letters of the station:  http://www.1320warlradio.com/gs/)

Good to hear talk about lawyers doing good work.  We know there's great lawyers out there doing some fabulous work, in fact.  We have one who co-hosts with us monthly, Seth Handy.  At Renewable Now we very much appreciate their efforts and impact.

Tomorrow we talk with Michael Weller from Bracewell & Giulani LLC and get a lawyer's view of the Earthjustic petition to the EPA that they develop disclosure and more regulations around the chemicals pounded into the ground as part of hydraulic fracturing of gas, and better oversight/regulations regarding the health risks of fracking.  Certainly a controversial topic that evokes incredible passion on both sides.

Here's part of a blog Bracewell & Giulani posted concerning the petition.  We've included a link to this post which will get you on their site.  It appears to us that they do some very good work as well. 

Listen in live and, if you can't, we'll post the show on our main site--renewable now.biz--in a few weeks:

LINK:    http://www.energylegalblog.com/archives/2014/05/19/5538#more-5538




""The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has taken its first official step toward creating a federal regulatory program that would require disclosure and reporting concerning chemicals used in the hydraulic fracturing process.  On May 9, 2014, EPA released an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR) under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) that seeks public comment on the types of information that should be reported or disclosed for hydraulic fracturing substances or mixtures and the mechanism for obtaining this information.
While the ANPR is directed to the public in general, companies in the oil and gas industry, particularly those that manufacture, import, process or distribute chemical substances used in hydraulic fracturing treatments, should take note.
Background
In August 2011, Earthjustice and 114 other organizations petitioned EPA under section 21 of TSCA to adopt a rule that would require, among other things, mandatory disclosure and reporting of the chemicals used in oil and gas exploration and production (E&P). 
Specifically, the petition requested that EPA adopt a rule pursuant to TSCA section 8(a) requiring manufacturers and processors of E&P chemical substances and mixtures to maintain records and submit reports to EPA disclosing:
  1. the identities, categories, and quantities of E&P chemical substances and mixtures,
  2. descriptions of byproducts of E&P chemical substances and mixtures,
  3. all existing data on potential or demonstrated environmental and health effects of E&P chemical substances and mixtures, and
  4. the number of individuals potentially exposed to E&P chemical substances and mixtures.
In addition, Earthjustice petitioned EPA to adopt a rule pursuant to TSCA section 8(d) to require submittal of all existing, not previously reported health and safety studies related to the health and/or environmental effects of all E&P chemical substances and mixtures.
In November 2011,  the EPA granted in part the TSCA section 8(a) and 8(d) petitions for chemical substances and mixtures used in hydraulic fracturing but denied the petitions to the extent they addressed E&P chemicals not used in hydraulic fracturing, finding that the request was overly broad and petitioners had failed to demonstrate that such a broad rule was necessary.  EPA also rejected companion petitions under TSCA section 4 (for lack of foundation) and section 8(c) (which does not authorize petitions).
In July 2013, EPA released a document that set forth the Agency’s reasons for denying in part Earthjustice’s petition and announced its plans to move forward with an ANPR focused on the reporting of chemical substances and mixtures used in hydraulic fracturing, including submission of unpublished health and safety studies.
ANPR
In the ANPR published today, EPA seeks comment on the types of information  associated with hydraulic fracturing chemicals and mixtures that should be disclosed, in addition to the options for reporting related health and safety studies. 
The Agency has not yet decided whether disclosure should be mandatory, voluntary, or a combination of both.  EPA solicits views on this question and also asks whether best management practices should be disclosed, whether third-party certification and collection should be required, and whether EPA should employ incentives for disclosure of information..."
- See more at: http://www.energylegalblog.com/archives/2014/05/19/5538#more-5538

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