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Companies agree to improve safety measures at natural gas operations in Western PA

Release Date: 04/16/2013
Contact Information: Bonnie Smith, smith.bonnie@epa.gov, 215-814-5543

PHILADELPHIA (April 16, 2013) – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced today two separate settlements with companies that have agreed to improve operation of their natural gas facilities in western Pennsylvania. EPA alleged that the companies failed to comply with federal clean air regulations to prevent accidental releases of flammable substances.

Mark West Liberty Midstream & Resources has agreed to install appropriately sized emergency vents on its condensate storage tanks and adopt an approved maintenance schedule at all 14 of its compressor stations in Washington and Butler counties, Pa.

The Mark West compressor stations receive natural gas from well sites, separate out the liquids from the natural gas and route the natural gas liquids to aboveground storage tanks at the facilities.

In a separate settlement, the owner and operator of the Laurel Mountain Midstream Robin Hill facility in Washington County, Pa., have agreed to conduct a safety analysis and make necessary improvements. The natural gas processing plant is owned by Laurel Mountain Midstream Operating. Williams Field Services Company is the facility operator. The companies also agreed to coordinate and conduct training with local emergency responders.

EPA conducted inspections at 10 of the 14 Mark West facilities and the Robin Hill facility in the fall of 2011 to determine compliance with Clean Air Act Section 112(r), prevention of accidental releases to air. As a part of the settlement, the companies did not admit or deny EPA’s allegations.

For more information on Clean Air Act Section 112(r) http://www.epa.gov/osweroe1/docs/chem/caa112_rmp_factsheet.pdf