Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Kasich Signs Energy Bill in to Law

Earlier today, Governor John Kasich signed SB 315 in to law which changes a number of energy related regulations including those regarding the process known as fracking.

This bill has been perceived as a jobs bill as evidenced by State Senator Kevin Bacon's comments in an interview with ONN where he said, "We're talking about parts of the state that badly need these jobs, the northeastern, the eastern parts of Ohio. I mean this is really big."

According to the fact sheet provided by the governor's office, SB 315 builds on existing regulations and improving upon them in the following ways:

  • All chemical information, including trade secret formulas, must be shared with doctors, and medical professionals may share even proprietary chemical information with the patient and other medical professionals directly involved in treating the patient,

  • Well operators are now required to take water samples within 1,500 feet of a proposed horizontal well and disclose the results in their permit applications,

  • Well operators must disclose the proposed source of water used in the well drilling and completion process,

  • Well operators who violate safety and environmental regulations are subject to mandatory daily fines,

  • Rules for disposing of waste water through underground injection are strengthened to ensure protection of health and environment.

  • While Ohio's gas prices inch back upward, Kasich and the general assembly are taking appropriate and necessary steps to put Ohio on the right path on energy policy. Also covered in this bill are measures promoting the development of new energy sources and technologies, natural gas development, electricity transmission and distribution, waste heat recovery, worker training, energy conservation, renewable energy.

    Probably the most important piece of the legislation is the requirement to streamline and expedite environmental permits for related projects. The existing process is lengthy and a burden to companies wanting to do energy-related business in Ohio.

    Bottom line: This law is good for Ohio as it will provide good jobs while also contributing to our economy in a big way. The energy industry in Ohio got a major boost today.