D&L Energy has applied for a permit for a new injection well in the Mahoning Valley, the first since the moratorium was lifted by the state after several earthquakes in the Youngstown area.
The proposed location is off state Route 82 near the intersection with Warner Road, according to the permit request to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.
The Brookfield Township site was chosen because the geology made sense, and there have been successful injection wells in the area, said Vince Bevacqua, spokesman for D&L Energy.
The application for a permit does not mean the company has made a final decision about locating an injection well at the site, he said.
There have been four permits issued since the state’s new laws regarding injection wells went into effect and the moratorium on new well permits was lifted, said Heidi Hetzel-Evans, spokeswoman for ODNR. None of the permit locations is within the Mahoning Valley.
The proposed injection depth of the Brookfield Township well would be between 7,600 and 8,500 feet, “well above the Precambrian level in the Mahoning Valley,” she said.
“There are still about 30 permits [pending]. We’ll keep working through them through the end of the current year and possibly into next year,” Hetzel-Evans said.
The injection-well moratorium for the 7-mile extended range around the D&L injection-well site on Ohio Works Drive in Youngstown remains intact, she said. The Ohio Works Drive well is the location that ODNR has stated was most likely the cause of several earthquakes in the Youngstown area. D&L has disputed ODNR’s findings.
The company was never accused of doing anything not allowed within its permit from ODNR.
Since the moratorium was put in place, the state has approved new regulations that provide ODNR with the ability to require seismic testing before, during and after injection, said Hetzel-Evans.
“Each injection well is different,” she said.
ODNR also uses experts from other agencies in its reviews and has much more leeway and legal authority for enforcement, Hetzel-Evans said.
“The new requirements didn’t make the application process different. D&L Energy will continue to comply with all regulatory requirements,” Bevacqua said.
D&L received approval in October from ODNR for improvement plans for an injection-well site that had been permitted before the moratorium along state Route 7 near North Lima.
The company says it has no plans to dispose of brine water at the North Lima site until either the end of the year or the beginning of 2013.