Gulfport Energy Corp. has reached a settlement with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency agreeing to pay a $1.7 million fine to resolve emissions violations at its operations in Ohio’s Utica Shale.

EPA said the settlement addresses Gulfport’s failure to capture and control air emissions from storage vessels and to comply with inspection, recordkeeping and reporting requirements. The company also will invest $2 million on improvements at 17 well pads in eastern Ohio to reduce volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions by 313 tons/year. VOCs contribute to the formation of ground-level ozone, or smog, which may cause health problems.

Gulfport operates in both the Utica and the SCOOP, aka the South Central Oklahoma Oil Province. But the bulk of its holdings are located in Ohio, where it has 210,000 net acres. The company produced about 1.5 Bcfe/d in 3Q2019, of which 1.2 Bcfe/d came from the Utica.

A consent decree outlining the settlement terms has been filed with the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio. It is subject to a 30-day public comment period and must be approved by the court.