Dec 22

Letter to SRBC Requesting Reconsideration of Water Withdrawal Permits

This morning we submitted an official letter on behalf of our members and 6 conservation and environmental groups to the Susquehanna River Basin Commission (SRBC), asking the Commissioners to reconvene for the purposes of completing its meeting held on December 15 and pointing out that the Commission’s approval of 26 water withdrawal permits for shale gas development projects may not be legally effective because it occurred after the meeting was adjourned.

Last week, the Commission hastily adjourned its meeting in Wilkes- Barre, after a group of citizens disrupted the meeting. Click here to view the complete text of the letter.

The SRBC held its December 15 meeting to consider several water withdrawal applications intended primarily for natural gas operations. In response to some outspoken members of the public, the meeting was adjourned; then, after adjourning, the Commissioners proceeded to vote off the record to approve the majority of water withdrawal applications. By adjourning the meeting prematurely, the SRBC prevented the testimony of non-protesting members of the public who wished to testify on individual water withdrawal applications. We believe that by not allowing public testimony and approving water permits off-the-record, the SRBC penalized the entire public and violated its own rules and procedure.