On April 20, 2022, a hearing was held in Commonwealth Court in Harrisburg, PA. As many are aware, CELDF has stood with the people and ecosystems of Grant Township (Indiana County, PA, population 700) in their courageous efforts to keep a frack waste injection well out of the community. That proposed well would pump millions of gallons of radioactive and chemically toxic brine into the same ground from which the community draws their drinking water. Injection wells have also been known to cause earthquakes.
The case currently at issue stems from the PA Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) suing Grant Township in 2017, seeking to invalidate the Township’s Home Rule Charter, which bans the disposal of fracking waste in the Township — You read that right, DEP is suing the Township for trying to protect its environment. Grant filed counterclaims against DEP, asking the court to declare that the Charter was a valid law under the Environmental Rights Amendment (ERA) of the PA Constitution and that DEP has failed in its duty to protect Pennsylvanians’ clean air and water. Pennsylvania General Energy, the company that wants to dump the waste, has also intervened in the lawsuit. We are now waiting for a decision from the court about whether this case will proceed to a full trial, with witnesses and experts.
If you’ve not heard about Grant Township’s fight before, here is a link to much more background, a timeline, and court documents. Grant Township has also been featured in national media, including Rolling Stone, as well as a full-length documentary titled Invisible Hand.
It’s been a pitched battle so far, with many ups and downs, and the fight continues. We continue to stand with the incredibly courageous people of Grant Township. There is much more to come.