Oil and Gas Companies Team With Environmental Groups To Develop Performance StandardsSource: Reed Smith
The Center for Sustainable Shale Development (CSSD), an environmental organization in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, has announced a program of performance standards that has been mutually agreed to by a number of environmental groups and oil and gas companies. The program is voluntary and does not create any new requirements or restrictions for oil and gas companies. However, it is possible that state regulators will look to the performance standards when drafting new regulations and permitting requirements or that the performance standards will become unofficial best practices in the industry.
Currently, the program is directed toward states in the Marcellus and Utica shales, including Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, and New York. The participants include Shell, Chevron Appalachia, EQT Corporation, and Consol Energy, as well as the Environmental Defense Fund, the Clean Air Task Force, and the Pennsylvania Environmental Council. The program will be overseen by a 12-member board. Four seats on the board are reserved for the oil and gas industry, four are reserved for environmental groups, and the last four are reserved for various independent individuals, such as former Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Christine Todd Whitman and former Treasury Secretary Paul O’Neill.