Photo courtesy of Mark Cour
It was a day well spent. A day in the sun among old and new friends. Gas Stock was a gathering which spanned generations, politics, communities, and states. It was a campfire around which we joined as one. Thank you to NEPA Citizens in Action!
I was part of a small group which hiked from the Susquehanna in Wilkes-Barre to the Fair Grounds in Lehman. Here is what the Times Leader reported about our trek:
Don Williams, of Montgomery County, set out from Wilkes-Barre’s Nesbitt Park at 6:30 a.m. and walked more than 10 miles to the fairgrounds together with his daughters, Lisa and Lauren Williams, and two local bloggers, Mark Cour and Herb Baldwin.“I’ve attended several of these meetings where the gas industry people basically said, if you drove here and you don’t support what we’re doing, you’re a hypocrite. I remembered that,” Williams said. “That’s why I did it, being able to say I had the lowest carbon footprint here today.”
Actually there was six of us. The person omitted in the Times Leader quote is blogger Hannah Abelbeck. Sending us off was yet another blogger, John, and his sister Sandy. They showed up at dawn to wish us well and record the riverside ceremony. Afterward, we started out, four bloggers and two sane people.
(“By the time we got to Gas Stock, we were half a dozen strong…”) (apologies to Joni Mitchell).
Our march paralleled in reverse the route of Toby’s Creek as it moves from the back mountains down to the valley, tumbling fresh water into the Susquehanna and eventually the Chesapeake.
We started our journey atop concrete and asphalt, alongside traffic and amid big plastic signs and display windows. We left the streets in Luzerne and strode along an old railroad bed turned recreational trail. It parallels the highway which was once but a creek side foot path. Now the sound of traffic permeates the air.
We eventually emerged from the woods onto route 309 in Dallas. It was pedestrian unfriendly from there to the fairground. We stopped by Lisa Baker’s office but no one was there. We took some pictures and left tri-folds of information in the doorjamb. Lisa continues to believe this corporate invasion can be “managed”.
How do you manage billions of gallons of toxic slurry left inside the shattered rock? How do you manage the diminishing water supply? How do you tell the regional water cycle it will have to do with billions of gallons less? How do you insure the infrastructure of wells are maintained and incident free for the next thousand years? How do you manage a hodgepodge of corporations, companies, and contractors from myriad states and countries whose only goal is the maximization of profit?
The picture above is one taken at Baker’s office. You will notice the Pennsylvania State Flag is upside down. This was not a mistake. Don did it, as a sign of distress. Penn’s Woods is in serious jeopardy.
( There is, however, one mistake in the photo: See if you can find it in less than five seconds.)
Meanwhile, to be continued…