DEQ to distribute questionnaires

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - The Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality will begin to distribute questionnaires this month to approximately 180 natural gas pipeline owners and operators across the state as part of the Mercury Risk Reduction Plan.

DEQ implemented the Mercury Risk Reduction Plan in 2007 in order to engage industry, regulatory agencies, groups and individuals in reducing the use, release and exposure of mercury within the state.

As part of that plan, DEQ has implemented a voluntary survey by which representatives from the oil and gas industry can take a proactive approach to identify, monitor and clean up potential mercury release locations.

DEQ's Bill Schramm says the questionnaire is the first push at asking the industry as a whole to provide DEQ help in locating potential sites where elemental mercury may be impacting the environment.

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