It is horrifying that we have to fight our own government to save the environment. ~Ansel Adams

April 13, 2011

Photo by Ansel Adams


Consider Harveys Lake for “exceptional value” watershed designation

December 10, 2010

We must try every possible (and impossible) avenue, strategy, tactic, and maneuver we can think of to stop the ruination of Pennsylvania by the gas drilling industry. Whether it is a protected species or place. Whether it is super inflated performance bonding. Or, perhaps, the discovery of forgotten laws. Moratoriums, and rights ordinances. Political and populist activism. Consciousness raising, demonstrating, civil disobedience … There is no one way. When you are in a fight, you don’t use just one hand. You use your whole body and spirit to defeat the invader.

Here is a letter to a state representative, asking that Harveys Lake be considered “exceptional”. While it can be argued that all bodies of water are exceptional, the state does have that designation to consider as a solution for this particular body of water. Why not try it?

It has come to our attention that DEP issued a drilling permit on Dec. 3rd for a gas well on Sterling Farms in Wyoming County. This is about a mile from our lake. It is inconceivable that an agency charged with protecting our environment could issue a permit for drilling within such close proximity to the lake.

I see in today’s Citizens’ Voice that the state is nearing a decision on making Silver Lake (also a glacial lake) a designated “exceptional value” watershed, which will prohibit gas drilling activities in that area. For the life of me, I can’t understand why the citizens need to be pointing out to the DEP where these exceptional water sheds exist! Do they do any research before handing out these drilling permits?

A single accident like the one in Clearfiled County in June can potentially destroy Harveys Lake. This would be a crime of significant proportions.

Throughout the years, DEP has had a great deal of influence on protecting our lake. Our public sewer system was state mandated, as is the current moratorium on any new connections to this system. Residents are experiencing difficulty in obtaining permits from DEP to build docks on their shoreline property because of the potential to harm plankton. We have our own ordinance banning the use of port-a-potties/job johnnies because of the potential leakage into the lake. It is ludicrous to allow gas drilling so close to this lake!

I am asking for your immediate attention as I consider this a matter of urgency! Please do whatever you can to stop this madness. Harveys Lake is the state’s largest natural freshwater lake and is pristine. If that doesn’t qualify it for “:exceptional value” status, I don’t know what does! Michell’e Boice (letter to Representative Karen Boback)


The Kidnapping of a River and the Truth

November 16, 2010

The kidnapping of a river, wherein it is murdered and buried – gallon by gallon:

In Don William’s most recent blog post, 600,000 natural gas wells!, his sources report the industry is expecting to drill from 200,000 to 600,000 wells in Pennsylvania.

In my recent post, Fracked Dry, I reported that the 200,000 figure was one which was put forth by Penn State as the “high end”. As I related at the time, I thought their figures low. While 200,000 is a devastating amount, 600,000 is homicidal.

It represents 1.5 TRILLION gallons of water profoudly polluted and permanently removed from our water cycle.

Only a small percentage of the water shot down during the fracking process comes back up. The rest is left below – abandoned in the form of a radioactified toxified super salty slurry.

1.5 Trillion gallons is equivalent to 204 Harvey’s Lakes or 1,341 Huntsville Reservoirs left beneath the earth’s surface.

1.5 Trillion gallons represents 57 days worth of water flow throughout the entire Susquehanna watershed.

Can we afford to loose 16% of our water cycle?

Also, 600,000 wells means 360 billion pounds of chemicals shot into the innocent earth. That’s 7.5 million tractor trailer loads of chemicals. That’s a convoy which would wrap around the earth over four times!

And what amount of air pollution will this pervasive drilling bring to our children’s and mother’s lungs?

Again, this is homicide, suicide, filicide, matricide, populicide, and ecocide.

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The Kidnapping of truth:

And how about that CBS corporation. Their 60 Minutes episode on fracking, titled Shaleionaires, was laughable. “Cleaner” gas was assumed, wealth was assumed, water was forgotten. In the conclusion there was hope of a bright solution and prosperous future, if we just eliminate those pesky human errors, reign in cost cutting, and don’t drink the frack fluid.

I thought it was counterproductive.

The blog, Fracked, has much to say about the 60 Minutes piece. See Sixty Fracking Lame Minutes and Shale Gas Drilling: Pros and Cons.

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Here is a poignant comment on Shaleionaires from the CBS website:

I was relieved to see SOMETHING about the gas drilling on 60 Minutes, but the piece does not begin to cover the issues and the fear and anger we experience living in the midst of the new “gold rush.” I live in southwestern PA near Waynesburg, PA and there is a well being drilled on nearly every hill top, dividing communities, pitting neighbor against neighbor and providing very little comfort/peace/environmental protection. A public forum was held in Pittsburgh recently and the representative from the DEP was very rude to the angry citizens who only want their questions answered. We were told we now live in a heavy industry area and no longer in the agriculture area. I already have had breast cancer from living in a heavy industry polluted town in WV and now face this invasion, because that is what it feels like, an invasion. As the farmers gather their thousands and reportedly millions, sell their cattle and either move or ride around in their caddys the rest of us try to come up with Plan B, sell now? wait? See what happens? Endure the filth, the smell, the noise and wait for more cancer?
Why can’t we commit to solar and wind power with such fervor????????

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Covert Fracking Cheerleaders: WVIA, the Kirby Theatre, WILK, Time Leader, Citizen’s Voice, CBS,… and many more. Some are transparent, others avoidant, others play both sides. It all has to do with donors and advertisers. Income is the game.


MARC 1 PIPELINE – The end of the Endless Mountains?

October 22, 2010

Here is an urgent article from RDA. The comment period ends October 25th.:

MARC 1 PIPELINE
The end of the Endless Mountains?

Central New York Oil and Gas L.L.C., a subsidiary of Inergy L.P., has applied to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) for certification to build a pipeline named MARC 1 through Sullivan County. This would connect interstate gas transmission pipelines running east-west across the state though the counties of Lycoming, Clinton, Tioga, Bradford, Susquehanna, and others.

Permission for this line must be granted by FERC. If granted, pipeline construction that includes the right of eminent domain becomes a reality in the heart of the Pennsylvania’s Endless Mountains. This large pipeline also guarantees “development zones” along its path, and thousands of gas wells with thousands more gathering lines will be constructed to meet up with MARC 1.

This project means an end to the Pennsylvania Wilds and Endless Mountains as we know them. Individual property owner’s rights, ecosystems, sustainable tourism revenue and jobs, and the quality of life for those who live in, travel through, and visit this region are at stake.

For example, one landowner along the route expressed concern over the fate of a 300-year-old tree. “Don’t worry,” a company representative told him. “We’ll pay you for the wood.”

RDA and other advocacy groups have thus far been unsuccessful in obtaining large numbers of people who care enough to make their voices heard. Join with us as we meet that challenge and speak out with a growing voice of outrage.

Comment period on permission for the pipeline ends on October 25th. We continually hear from RDA members asking, “What can I do?” Do this.

1. Contact FERC and express your concern over the environmental impact this pipeline will have on Pennsylvania’s ecosystems. (FERC’s involvement is only in the area of environmental risk assessment and only for this interstate line)
2. Forward this message to your friends and family and ask them to do the same

When contacting FERC, refer to Docket # :    CP10-480-000

Visit the FERC website by clicking here, then click on the orange e-Comment link.

You will be asked for your name and email and a capcha verification. Submitting that information will generate a message to your inbox providing a link to the comment section. You will need the Docket # to submit your comment.

If preferred, you may phone your comments to (202) 502-8258.

Request that this permit BE DENIED due to the impact that construction of this pipeline will have on the environment and ecosystems in Pennsylvania’s northern tier. You do not need to be an expert on the subject or to say more than that.

PLEASE – MAKE A DIFFERENCE TODAY.

UPDATE: Please follow the directions above.  They make you jump through hoops to file a comment but do persevere.