South Pittsburgh Reporter - Serving South Pittsburgh Since 1939

Action needed on drilling


There is an urgent need to take action regarding the Marcellus Shale gas drilling in Pennsylvania. Although the industry is advertising natural gas as clean burning, the truth is that the mining of natural gas is anything but clean.

Gas drilling or fracking pollutes water with chemicals such as benzene and toluene. It pollutes the air with methane and other hydrocarbons. What's more is that the fracking process is exempt from compliance with the Clean Water Act, The Clean Air Act and the Superfund Act - which requires companies to clean up after themselves if and when they pollute.

The unregulated gas fracking industry has been causing harm to water and air all over the country. Without regulations gas companies do not have to account for the tainted water that comes from the gas wells. Much of it is spilled and makes its way into our rivers and streams.

Without a tax on the industry, the responsibility of cleaning the water falls back on the local water companies, and the cost of that clean up falls on the consumer. Presently Pennsylvania is the only state not collecting a severance tax on the gas industry. Since the amount of gas from each well is finite and will run out, it's important to take action to tax the industry now before it's too late.

Furthermore, Governor Corbett has lifted the moratorium on new gas leases in state forests, opening up all of what makes Pennsylvania beautiful to be violated and destroyed by the gas industry.

I encourage all Pennsylvania citizens to speak up about this issue. I have been sending letters to Governor Corbett requesting that he issue a severance tax on the gas drilling industry and not allow further gas drilling in state forests. Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful.

Elayne Eckman



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