Posted on September 10, 2011 Flooding & FrackingHydraulic Fracturing Saturday, September 10th, 2011
A consortium of environmental groups in Pennsylvania have issued a statement concerning the mounting evidence that flood waters that overran hydrofracking sites are spreading highly toxic materials into the environment. The statement said in part that “given the significant flooding over the past several days, there is much concern over how many well pads, open pits and chemical storage tank fields have been inundated with toxic chemicals washing into our waterways and flooded communities,” Jeff Schmidt, Director with the Sierra Club Pennsylvania Chapter also stated: “it is imperative that the PA DEP not allow natural gas wells and infrastructure to be located in floodplains.”
If NY State did not already have sufficient reason to ban hydrofracking our recent experience with Hurricane Irene and tropical storm Lee demonstrates how vulnerable our communities are to a catastrophic event resulting from the impact of storm water on a chemical intensive process such as hydrofracking. The risks are far too high for our already battered communities to allow the wide-spread proliferation of industrial sites containing thousands of gallons of toxic materials.
Many of you have seen first hand the flooded valleys and flat lands of Schoharie and Middelburgh. Some of that land is leased for gas drilling. Many more acres could be in the future. If we allow drilling, the next terrible flood may carry with it breached chemical storage tanks and toxic waste which will contaminate farmland, school yards and water supplies. Schoharie Valley Watch calls on the State of NY to ban hydrofracking and in the interim, for every community in our region to enact land use regulations that include prohibitions on heavy industrial operations such as hydrofracking. Let’s learn from our recent tragedy and the failures of Pennsylvania.