PITTSBURGH – A company that treated wastewater from coal mines and gas drilling operations near Pittsburgh has closed, and state officials are scrambling to clean up a mess that's still there.
Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection spokesman John Poister says the majority of the waste at the former Tunnelton Liquids site in Saltsburg is coal-related, but a considerable amount of sludge in a pond appears to be from the recent Marcellus Shale gas drilling boom. Acid mine water and sludge is building up and could overflow into the Conemaugh (KAHN'-uh-mah) River if left untreated.
Al Lander is one of the Tunnelton owners. He says they tried to work with DEP but got nowhere.
Poister says DEP has a cleanup plan and is waiting for results from recent tests.