(COLUMBUS, Ohio)—Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine has determined that certain permits governing treatment and disposal of brine from oil and gas wells, issued in Trumbull County by the former Director of the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, were not issued legally.
In two appeals involving permits issued to Patriot Water Treatment LLC and the City of Warren pending at the Environmental Review Appeals Commission, Attorney General DeWine has filed a Determination of Unlawful Permit Issuance and Request for Remand indicating that permits issued to Patriot and the City of Warren were not in compliance with Revised Code Section 1509.22. That provision mandates that all brine and other fluids generated by oil and gas well drilling, including fracking liquids, must be disposed through methods specified in that statute. The permits issued to Patriot and the City of Warren were not issued for any of the statutorily approved methods.
"It is my determination that the permits issued previously did not have a basis in the law," said Attorney General DeWine. ""The safety of Ohio's water is too important to put at risk as most wastewater treatment plants don't currently have the proper technology for adequately treating fracking fluids."
Today's action by the Attorney General is consistent with determinations made by the current Director of Ohio EPA that brine and fracking fluids should not be managed by wastewater treatment plants unless the plant employs a certified innovative technology, which Patriot's and the City of Warren's do not.
The Attorney General has asked the Commission to dismiss the appeals and return the permits to the Director of Ohio EPA for further action.
Lisa Hackley: 614-466-3840
Dan Tierney: 614-466-3840
Copy of Detrmination of Unlawful Permit issuance and Request for Remand (PDF)