Wed May 23, 2012
Energy trade secrets prompt Ohio Statehouse feud
Environmental advocates in Ohio are blasting a newly added energy-bill provision, which they say would limit the rights of drilling opponents to sue energy companies for withholding chemical trade secrets.
Their opposition came Wednesday even as an Ohio House committee addressed their earlier concern by clarifying that doctors given new access to drillers' proprietary chemical recipes could share them with public health officials.
Both changes are part of an energy bill up for a House vote Wednesday.
Jack Shaner of the Ohio Environmental Council said one amendment would make it virtually impossible for most Ohioans to challenge oil and gas-related companies who claim their chemical information should be shielded as a trade secret.
State officials said they pushed to ensure property owners and neighbors could sue for the information.