Friday, December 16, 2011

SRBC Hearing: Citizens Oppose Water Withdrawals, Then Commission Approves Permits Anyway!

The Susquehanna River in French Azilum, Bradford County, PA
Photo: Carol Manuel

Jay Sweeney's testimony before the members of the Susquehanna River Basin Commission at the hearing in Wilkes-Barre, PA, December 15th:

"The mission of the Susquehanna River Basin Commission (SRBC), which is defined in the Compact, is to enhance public welfare through comprehensive planning, water supply allocation, and management of the water resources of the Susquehanna River Basin.

 DEP reports over 1300 wells were drilled in 2010 and over 300 in the first quarter of this year. At 5 million gallons per fracked well, that is approximately 8 billion gallons of water used in the hydrofracking process in 16 months. The International Lake Environment Committee estimates the volume of Harvey’s Lake at .03 cubic kilometers or 8 billion gallons. In less that 2 years time, the equivalent of Pennsylvania’s largest natural lake by volume will have been squandered, turned into untreatable radioactive wastewater. This does not enhance the public welfare. It is a threat to the public welfare. This is unconscionable!

 We are tired of hearing pandering politicians, insulting industry insiders and radio, television and print advertizing trying to convince us that the natural gas industry is here to create jobs and benefit our community when in reality, they are here to rape, pillage and plunder our natural resources. make their profits and leave a devastated environment in their wake.

 The SRBC has been culpable in this travesty. Pennsylvania’s water is our commonwealth property. It is time for SRBC to live up to its mission.
We the people of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania say, stop stealing our water! Stop selling it to an industry that turns it into radioactive sludge! Stop dumping it into our rivers and streams! No more permits! No more withdrawals!

From The Times Leader report:

"Opponents of hydraulic fracturing, the controversial process used to extract natural gas from the Marcellus Shale, urged SRBC not to approve 26 applications for water withdrawal permits within the Susquehanna River Basin on its agenda, most of which were submitted by gas drillers.
SRBC regulates water withdrawals within the basin through permitting.
The commissioners approved 24 of those applications, denying one driller’s application and deferring another from an individual, and in doing so prompted angry shouts:
This proceeding is a joke! You’re not taking our water!
The meeting closed with protestors chanting an apparently prepared statement read from cards and nearly chasing commission members from the room.
“Members of the Susquehanna River community, this is a crisis,” they chanted.
The Susquehanna River is being sacrificed. Natural gas drilling is poisoning our water. We know this. We will stop this. We have no choice. We will protect our water. We are here to help, and everyone must help. Our future depends on it. We honor the river; we honor our lives.

Click here to see photos of the members of the SRBC.

The SRBC is a rubber stamper .
They are not protecting the Susquehanna River or the people who live near it. It's shameful!

1 comment:

smurfette said...

Perhaps radioactive sludge instead of water is a good thing. Maybe it's the fountain of youth in a nice, oily mudpack. Maybe humans will evolve so we don't need water- we'll just be little crispy humanoids. Until that happens, though, it MIGHT be a good idea to save SOME of Pennsylvania's water. Otherwise, big business will have to switch from fossil fuels to selling water and we know where that leads: rich really quenched; poor really parched!