Environment

Indictment
10:34 pm
Mon November 17, 2014

Blankenship Ordered to Appear for Arraignment, Gag Order Set

Credit Brianhayden1980 / wikimedia Commons

A federal Magistrate has denied former Massey CEO Don Blankenship’s request to delay arraignment proceedings.

According to court records, Magistrate Judge R. Clarke VanDervort denied Blankenship’s request to postpone his initial court appearance. VanDervort ordered Blankenship to appear in court, surrender his passport, prepare to meet and discuss his financial circumstances, and other actions to prepare for court proceedings.

The former Massey CEO  is set to be arraigned in federal court on Thursday. The former leader of what was once one of the largest coal producers in the country Massey Energy CEO, Don Blankenship was indicted by the United States Attorney’s Office on two mine safety charges, lying to the securities and exchange commission and securities fraud.

The decision to proceed this week with his arraignment comes days after the judge presiding over Blankenship’s criminal case issued a gag order for the parties involved.

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Lochghelly Injection Well
4:15 pm
Fri May 23, 2014

Leak Found at Fayette Frack Waste Site

Credit Department of Environmental Protection

  Updated June 6, 2014

The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection says the leak occurred in a tank carrying oil and gas waste from the above ground pits and not a pipe.

The DEP says about 20 to 30 gallons spewed for two to three hours through a pinhole in a joint weld.

The DEP says the "failure in the line" was above ground.

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Underground Injection Well
4:12 pm
Fri February 14, 2014

DEP Orders Fayette County Waste Pit Shutdown, Renews Well Permit

Brown liquid covers the outside of the waste pit on Danny Webb Construction's site. Residents have been concerned the pit is leaking for years.
Credit Jessica Lilly / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection has renewed a permit for an underground injection well in Fayette County that accepts fracking water and other waste.

A public hearing in 2013 brought concerned residents and former workers of Danny Webb Construction, the owner of the site. Residents have been concerned about the site for years.

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House of Delegates
4:18 pm
Fri January 24, 2014

House Finance Committee Asks Questions About Chemical Leak During DEP Budget Hearing

DEP secretary Randy Huffman presents the budget to the House Finance Committee.
Credit Aaron Payne

Cabinet Secretary of the West Virginia DEP Randy Huffman presented the proposed budget to the committee, relating how the organization would deal with the governor’s 7.5 percent cut.

Huffman assured there would be no loss in personnel. However, paying the personnel a fair and competitive wage was a challenge.

Delegate Ron Walters asked how proposed water protection legislation would affect the DEP financially.

“We’re doing an inventory, right now,” Huffman said.

“We’re going to try in the next few days to get an estimate.”

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