EPA establishes oil and gas drilling tip line

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has established a tip line for citizens who want to report non-emergency suspicious activity related to oil and gas development, such as dumping and other illegal or suspicious hauling and/or disposal activities. "Non-emergency" means that this line is not intended to generate an immediate response from public safety authorities.

A big thumbs up to EPA for acknowleding the growing public concern about the environmental impacts of oil and natural gas drilling. EPA said it is "very concerned about the proper disposal of waste products, and protecting air and water resources."

EPA wants to get a better understanding of what people are experiencing and observing as a result of drilling activities. The information collected may also be useful in investigating industry practices.

People can submit information to the tipline by phone: 1-877-919-4EPA (toll free), or e-mail: eyesondrilling@epa.gov. Instructions for how to submit the most helpful information, as well as a snail mail address if that is preferred, are available on the EPA website. While this tipline has been established by EPA's Mid-Atlantic region, it will take information from anywhere in the country and pass it on to the appropriate authorities. I encourage people to use this tipline.

Note: If you do have an emergency that requires an immediate response, call state and local authorities. In addition, spills in particular should be reported to the National Response Center (NRC) at: 1-800-424-8802 or directly on the NRC website. The NRC is the sole federal point of contact for reporting oil and chemical spills and functions 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.