Gov. John Kasich’s executive order gives state gas and oil chief broad authority over injection wells
Published: Tuesday, July 10, 2012, 7:30 PM
Gov. John Kasich issued an executive order granting the state's oil and gas chief Rick Simmers czar-like authority over injection well permitting.
The order makes it clear that the governor wants the Department of Natural Resources to be more of a watchdog than merely a permit processor for the industry.
Simmers now has the authority to require a bevy of tests before a well is drilled and even after it is operational.
The new rules apply to all injection well applications, even those filed before Tuesday.
Under the order, Simmers can:
• Order seismic testing before an injection well is drilled and seismic monitoring afterward.
• Order an X-ray examination of the bottom of the well bore after it is drilled to look for faults in the bedrock.
An unseen fault in the rock under a Youngstown well late last year has been linked to the more than a dozen small earthquakes there. The state has kept that well off limits ever since the owner voluntarily stopped injecting brine.
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