Harch accused of dumping brine

Harch accused of dumping brine


The Ohio Department of Natural Resources is pursuing criminal and civil penalties against another company accused of illegally dumping brine waste from eastern Ohio’s growing shale oilfields.

Harch Environmental Resources of St. Clairsville purportedly dumped “brine and other oil- and gas- related wastes” onto a Belmont County farm, according to orders issued by ODNR’s oil and gas resources division Monday.

The company has requested a hearing with the agency, the next step in the process. “We don’t think the certificate should be revoked,” said Joe Koncelik, a Cleveland attorney representing Harch.

Harch is the second company to face a state revocation for illegal brine dumping.

D&L Energy and other affiliated companies in Youngstown lost their permit earlier this year after state investigators determined oilfield waste had been dumped into a storm sewer. D&L has appealed the revocation.

Chrysler refuses request for recall


A defiant Chrysler is refusing to recall about 2.7 million Jeeps the government says are at risk of a fuel-tank fire in a rear-end collision.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration sent Chrysler a letter asking that the company voluntarily recall Jeep Grand Cherokees from 1993 through 2004 and Jeep Libertys from 2002 through 2007.

Chrysler Group LLC, which is majority-owned by Italy’s Fiat SpA, said in a statement Tuesday that the Jeeps are safe and it “does not intend to recall the vehicles.”

Such a refusal by an auto company is rare. NHTSA can order a recall but needs a court order to enforce it.

David Strickland, the agency’s administrator, said in a statement that he hopes Chrysler will reconsider its decision.

Vindicator staff/wire reports

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