Expedited Erosion & Sedimentation Control General Permit (ESCGP-2 Expedited)
What Industry Wants
People who apply for this permit want permission to complete activities resulting in earth disturbances of 5 acres or more, including the construction of well pads, pipelines, compressor stations, and processing facilities.
Opportunities for Citizen Engagement
Citizens can only engage at the local zoning level. After the permit application is submitted, municipalities have 30 days to respond to Act 14 notices. There is no public participation process within PADEP (like public comment periods or hearings).
- ALLARM (violations of E&S permits)
- PADEP Notice of Intent Application Instructions
- Environmental Integrity Project's Citizen Toolkit
- Drill Operator
- County conservation district
- Local municipality
- Adjacent municipality
- Surface leaseholder
- Neighboring landowners/community
- Application Received
- Before application is received, operator must submit Act 14 notifications to municipality, adjacent municipalities and the county. Municipalities/counties have 30 days to respond from the time the permit application is received by PADEP.
- Completeness Review
- Highly variable but averages around a month to determine if the permit application is complete. E-facts gets updated to permit being complete: “The permit application package is complete, has been accepted, and is undergoing technical review.”
- Technical Review
- If application is complete and technically-adequate on the first try, the application is given a permit decision guarantee and PADEP has 14 days to either issue or deny the permit.
- Applicant has been issued a deficiency letter. If applicable, this application no longer qualifies for the Permit Decision Guarantee. At this point the applicant can respond to the deficiencies.
- Elevated Review Process
- “Response to the deficiency letter did not satisfy information request. Permit application now subject to the Elevated Review Process.”
- Permit Decision/Issuance
- If approved, status of permit gets updated to “Issued on DATE." Denied permits are listed as “Proposed But Never Materialized” or “Withdrawn”.
Opportunities for Improvement
EIP’s petition to standardize language in the Act 14 notices since this is a PADEP policy, not a law.
- Noticed in the bulletin after the permit is issued
- Act 14 Notice
Discussion of Step
If activities are disturbing under one acre, an erosion and control plan is still. This is not a type of permit, but is still required of the operator.
“Expedited Review Process” is not available for projects:
- Located in or with potential to discharge to waters that have a designated or existing use of High Quality or Exceptional Value, including exceptional value wetlands
- In which the area surrounding an oil or natural gas wellhead that is subject to earth disturbance and that is used or planned for use for drilling, production or plugging of the well including associated support activities is to be constructed in or on a floodplain
- Where earth disturbance activities are proposed on lands that are known to be currently contaminated by the release of regulated substances as defined in Section 103 of Act 2, 35 P.S.§ 6026.103
- or for transmission facilities