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Permit sought for sale of Kane sewer discharge

March 19, 2012

A permit application is being filed with the state Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) for the sale of Kane sewer effluent to drillers of Marcellus Shale and other natural gas wells.
KLH Engineers of Pittsburgh is filing the application on behalf of the Kane Borough Sewer Authority. KLH is the consulting engineering firm for the authority, which met Monday evening at the borough building in Kane.
"This is the first step," Authority Chairman Dave Peterson said in reference to the permit application to be filed with the DEP. "We can't do anything else until we get permission."
KLH also has submitted a copy of the DEP application notice to the McKean County Board of Commissioners, which meets today in Smethport.
The sewer authority for some time has discussed the feasibility of selling its effluent (discharge water) from the Kinzua sewage treatment plant off Route 321 at Dwight's Road north of Kane. Drillers reportedly use huge volumes of water in the drilling process.
Peterson said the authority would wait for DEP clearance to sell the effluent before setting a price for the water.
It is not known how long DEP will review the application before issuing the permit.
"I hope it won't take more than a couple of months," Peterson said.
Several Marcellus Shale wells already have been drilled in the area and water for the drilling has been obtained elsewhere. However, the Kane authority is hoping to receive DEP permission to sell sewer water for future wells.
"The drilling isn't over with," Peterson said.
In the application, KLH said the Kane sewer authority is "proposing to acquire a general permit for the beneficial reuse of the ... effluent" from the Kinzua sewage treatment plant. The application does not mention the authority's second sewage treatment plant on Pine Street.
According to the application, the proposed sale of the effluent will not result in "earth disturbance" and will not involve fill or excavation.
In other business at the 63-minute meeting, the authority:
*Voted 4-0 to approve the payment of $54,979.46 in invoices for repairs and services linked with the Wilson Run sewage pump station off Route 321 in Wetmore Township near East Kane.
Peterson joined with the authority members Frank Wojcik, Phil Lingenfelter and Doug Caldwell in approving the action. Lingenfelter is the sewage treatment plant operator in Kane. Caldwell is the mayor of Kane.
Howard Kane, the president of the Kane Borough Council and the newest member of the authority, did not attend the meeting.
Due to pump failures at the station, the authority hired Warren Waste to use a mobile unit to pump sewage at the site around-the-clock for about two weeks. The cost for this service is about $31,000.
Other large bills included $8,788 for electrical work by Atlantic Eastern of Kane and $6,359 for stone and grading by excavator Rick Powell of Kane.
Because the $9,000 cost for a new pump is less than estimated, the authority agreed Monday to buy a second pump at the same price as a system backup.
The Wilson Run station pumps sewage a distance of 1.2 miles to the station on Pond Street near the Wetmore Township building in East Kane.
*Discussed a proposal to change the composition of the authority.
Under current bylaws, four of the five seats are held by Kane borough residents. One seat is held by a Wetmore Township resident.
See full article by purchasing the March 20 edition of The Kane Republican.

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