The hydraulic fracturing method (a.k.a. “fracking”) for obtaining natural gas in the Marcellus Shale poses risks to public health, forests, parks, agriculture, clean water, soil and air. These risks are much greater than the potential economic benefit gained from natural gas extraction. Therefore, PSEC supports a moratorium on fracking in Pennsylvania until comprehensive, unbiased studies are completed on the safety of the process, and until proper regulation can be made based on the findings. These studies may include but are not limited to the EPA study that will be released in 2012. If legislators fail to impose an effective moratorium, the scientific studies return unreliable results, or if the results indicate drilling for deep shale gas presents a quantifiable harm to the natural environment, public health, or any manifestation of the public good, then PSEC will support a permanent ban on deep shale natural gas drilling within the state of Pennsylvania and beyond.
PSEC advocates the research, development, and implementation of renewable, truly clean energy solutions such as use reduction, increased energy efficiency, wind and solar generated electricity, geothermal heating/cooling, and beyond.
Proper regulation would be defined by a vigilant regulatory office, well-funded from a severance tax on drilling companies and natural gas extraction.
PSEC does not support the current exemption of gas, coal and oil from the Clean Water Act, Clean Air Act, Safe Drinking Water Act, Superfund Law, and Resource Conservation and Recovery Act.
PSEC does support regulatory legislation at federal, state and local government levels.
Federal legislation of note: the FRAC Act (HR 2766, S1215), sponsored by PA Senator Bob Casey, which would give the EPA oversight of the shale drilling industry; and the Clean Water Restoration Act (S787), which would undo exemptions for oil and gas companies from the Clean Water Act.
Pennsylvania legislation of note: Pennsylvania HB 2443, a severance tax plan that would ensure funds go to both regulatory agencies and affected communities; the Safer Drinking Water Act (SB777), co-sponsored by Senators Ferlo, J. Costa, and Pippy, which would restore power to the Safe Drinking Water Act; and a temporary moratorium on Marcellus Shale natural gas drilling, proposed by Senator Ferlo (SB1447). We oppose forced pooling or any use of eminent domain to acquire mineral rights on behalf of the industry.
PSEC strongly supports and endorses the legislation introduced by Pittsburgh City Councilman Doug Shields to ban drilling for natural gas within Pittsburgh City limits.
First, get a thorough introduction with our Shale Gas 101 primer.
Then visit the following websites and check our blog for updates!
Canvass with the PSEC petition!
Host your own “Frackinade Stand” action with our Frackinade Packet!
Download the Gasland Toolkit and host your own screening party!