I've cut and pasted the below appeal from a Sierra Club email, editing it lightly. It's on a topic we've discussed previously. I just sent a letter to my representative asking that no more drilling be authorized until the state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources could study the potential damage done by pumping chemicals into streams as a result of the fracturing process. Please learn what you can about this and if you live in PA, send a letter to your state representative and to Governor Rendell expressing your views:
"You have probably heard about the new "gold rush" in Pennsylvania to lease more state forest land to drillers. Drilling rigs from all over the country are moving into the Keystone State, to tap into the Marcellus Shale natural gas deposit that lies under large parts of Pennsylvania. And these companies, like Exxon and Chesapeake Energy, want to drill in our precious State Forests, threatening our water supplies, wildlife habitat and recreational opportunities that belong to all Pennsylvanians.
Legislation has been introduced to stop the expansion of drilling on our public State Forests until current drilling can be evaluated.
Please send a message to your representative to protect our state forests.
Our 2.1 million acre State Forest system comprises some of the best, most remote wildlife habitat in Pennsylvania. The 1 million acre "Pennsylvania Wilds", in the northcentral part of our state, is in the bullseye of the drillers, degrading the environment and quality of living in this tourism-based region. Currently, almost 700,000 acres of State Forests are already open to gas drilling.
80 new Marcellus gas wells are expected to be drilled in state forests in 2010. But the drillers want more! And Governor Rendell is supporting them while ignoring the environmental professionals in his Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR), who have cautioned him no that additional state forests lands should be leased for gas drilling. Stop more gas leasing in our state forests.
Water pollution and habitat destruction have already occurred as a result of the poorly-regulated drilling industry. The Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is supposed to regulate the drillers. Instead, DEP has been rubberstamping drilling permits for well pads with inadequate erosion controls, and in flood plains. DEP has already been forced to rescind permits it has issued, including one in Tioga State Forest, due to inadequate permit application review, site inspections and regulations. And this is on our land, the PA State Forest system."
Please ask your state representative to stop the shale drilling on State Forest Lands. For more information see