To the Editor:
I am writing this in response to the March 20presentation in Cazenovia in which Michael Lovegreen, Bradford County Conservation District Manager in Pennsylvania, spoke. Overall I felt he was quite candid on the issue of natural gas drilling. Although he didn’t clearly address the flow back issue of brine and radioactive material that comes to the surface. I have issue with the reporting done on this event which paints a picture for the people that didn’t attend – that this natural gas drilling is not a big deal and is safe. I was there for the entire 2 plus hours (never left my seat) taking notes throughout.
The following issues were presented by Lovegreen, yet not mentioned clearly in the Madison County Courier’s reporting (and possibly not elsewhere):
*towns missed the boat regarding leases
*know what you are getting into
*gas lines throughout – cannot use property
*emergency rooms are clogged for local residents use
*Only $25,000 bonded for road work
*Baseline testing – testing of water, air and land is important.
*Traffic – his 3 mile trip to work takes 45 minutes due to the traffic.
Politics should not enter into the issue. There’s spin and facts on both sides. Bottom line – let the people decide. Once drilling is allowed – there’s no turning back. Voice your concerns – both sides needs to be educated.
A little misleading :
“drilling only takes a couple of months” – this is 24-7 of trucking materials to and from the well sites. Gas companies could be in the area for
years going from one well site to another. The drilling might but not the preparation.
*80 percent of the people do not benefit, 20 percent gain – gas companies, those with leases, and owners of rental property (rents went from $500/mo to over $20007 mo).
*After a boom a bust will come. Towns have become ghost towns (waste land)
*PA doesn’t have Compulsory Integration. Under New York law, if the owners of at least 60 perecent of a well site sign leases the remaining owners are subject to Compulsory Integration. They will be forced to have drilling under their land.
*Gas companies want to lock up leases.
*There were leaks in PA from wells, reservoirs, and liners.
*Some of the residue was taken to landfills.
(*If a regular citizen wanted to do what the gas companies are doing it would not be allowed. For example – regulations require we need engineering approval for the installation of a septic system yet gas companies are exempt from many environmental laws).
*PA is just starting to tighten regulations because of the many mistakes in the past. Gas companies sold a bill of goods to PA and now many suffer.
*There are 2,000 permits for gas drilling in Bradford, PA.
*Land for compressors and reservoirs are purchased as needed for a price of $25,000-$30,000
*Uses for land are restricted by a gas line – no building, no driving-across, etc.
*35 sites draining water from the Susquehanna River. Communities make money by selling water.
*30 percent of tracking fluid comes back up to the surface as flow back fluid.
*Each well has over 3,000 welds – they don’t always work.
*Crime is up, jobs short lived.
*Go to meetings
*Timber industry suffers – lack drivers
*Landscape is loaded with materials
*Much of the help is from out-of-state
*Methane often getting into water supplies.
*300 large truck s per day on the road.
The flowback statement hi the article was misleading when facts are left out. Captured, reused, and recycled materials from hydrofracked wells can’t be used for human use wasn’t mentioned. New York State is not accepting this radioactive residue and other chemicals in any wastewater treatment plants. To my knowledge it is being sent to Ohio.
It was mentioned that 1,000 homes uses the same amount of water (as drilling wells) might be true. Problem again is well drilling water can’t be recycled for consumptive use and will never be put back into the hydrologic cycle. Besides if a hydrofrack well is in the area – there will be without question very few if any new homes built, let alone 1,000.
In the end it comes down to who will be making the money compared to who will be adversely hurt by the hydrofracking in their communities. As was previously stated -get the facts and don’t leave any out. Go vote.
Joe Yankowski, DeRuyter