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Marcellus Shale Coalition v. Department of Environmental Protection

Citation: 46 ELR 20179
No. No. 573,, (Pa. Commw. Ct., 11/08/2016)

A Pennsylvania court preliminarily enjoined the commonwealth from enforcing certain Marcellus Shale drilling regulations pending the outcome of an industry group's lawsuit. The group alleged that the regulations were unreasonable, violated state law, were void for vagueness, and that the government lacked statutory authority to issue them, among other things. Of the seven specific provisions challenged, the court held that the group was entitled to injunctive relief for four of them. Specifically, the court preliminarily enjoined regulations that expand protected public resource status to schools and playgrounds and to habitats for species of special concern. The court also temporarily enjoined provisions that impose new requirements for site restoration, set new construction standards for well development impoundments, and establish additional monitoring and remediation requirements.