Civil Disobedience Training Camp at Keuka Lake, NY to Train Young People in How to Oppose Marcellus Drilling

As MDN has written before, the real, deep-down motivation for those who oppose drilling for natural gas in the Marcellus Shale is not really about chemical contamination of groundwater, noise, roads and the many other (often legitimate) concerns people have with drilling. At it’s core, this is a fight, a battle, about a philosophy. The philosophy driving opposition to drilling says, in essence, that all fossil fuels are bad, and even though natural gas may burn cleaner than coal and oil and produce less carbon, it still must be opposed because it’s not “sustainable” and if natural gas usage increases, it will delay the marvelous future that awaits us all with solar, wind power and other so-called alternative energy sources.

MDN readers are sometimes skeptical when I point out this philosophical motivation. Need more proof? Take a look at an email just received by MDN from an organization in New York called The Green Umbrella about an upcoming event that will train young people in non-violent civil disobedience so they can attempt to stop Marcellus drilling in New York State. The event page, linked to at the bottom of the email, lists Frack Action and Food & Water Watch as co-sponsors of this civil disobedience training event.

Email received from The Green Umbrella, July 18

NY Organizer and Action Training

The Fight is NOW. Ban Fracking. Get NY OFF Dirty Fuel.

Fri. 7/29 – Sun. 7/31/2011

Register Here

The movement to protect our air, water and communities from extractive industries is at a critical turning point. In New York state hydrofracking is fast approaching, and the time to act is now. 

The weekend will plug participants into upcoming actions to ban fracking and stand strong against all fossil fuel extraction. Workshops will include hands-on non-violent civil disobedience trainings and equip trainees with strategic organizing skills led by experienced trainers and organizers.

Trainings will be held on Saturday, July 30th and Sunday, July 31st at Jeff and Jodi Andrysick’s off-grid farm on the western slope of Keuka Lake. Participants will camp on site Saturday night, and are encouraged to arrive Friday evening for camping, films and networking. Registration fees are on a sliding scale ($10-$20) to cover event costs.

Register Here and check out the Facebook Event.

For more info, visit the Event Page

MDN Note: All formatting (bolding, links) are preserved from the original

  • Anonymous

    Articles like the one written by the author above, often fail to consider what exactly is meant by “philosophy.” Is philosophy science? Let’s see. Duke University points out that gas wells lead to widespread local well water contamination? Science or philosophy? Cornell University reveals that methane contributions to global climate change is at least equal to that of coal (using conservative, international standards. The more controversial higher numbers are found using other less established standards). Is that really science? Or is it philosophy when Penn State finds that gas industry job projections are grossly inflated? What do we call it when we can read, with our own eyes, emails from Chesapeake officials calling the gas drilling boom a ponzi scheme? Do we call it science, or do we call it philosophy.

    OK. I’ll give it to you MDN. Not all of that is science. Most of it is speculation. It’s badly written at the very least It’s philosophy, and it’s coming from a heated emotional place that fails to recognize hard and fast economics about shale. It’s about values, not science. But I do have one question. When did values get knocked off the bargaining table. When did the values of hard working American people somehow become something we dismiss as irrational. It’s a drilling industry strategy to ignore and put down the little folks, to come in with a big bag of money and tell folks from Smalltown America how their world is going to be. If there’s one thing I hate more than big government, it’s big business. Because America is about the values we founded this nation on, and it’s about our freedom. When you start dismissing that, you’re taking a walk down a long and dangerous road. 

  • Julieann Wozniak

    No, having witnessed our land and water being destroyed and, in some cases, put out of our homes by Big Coal, we don’t trust this new industry. We know they don’t respect us as human beings with actual human rights, as demonstrated by the fact that Dunkard Creek is STILL dead.

  • Jim Willis

    Julieann, Dunkard Creek had nothing to do with gas drilling. Read this MDN story for the details:

  • Jim Willis

    My point with this article is that whatever you want to call it–philosophy, motivation, etc–if it were proven conclusively that natural gas was the best possible alternative for today’s energy, many would still oppose it because it’s a fossil fuel. I’m simply using the very words of those who oppose it to illustrate my point. Thinking about it now, perhaps I should have used the word “ideology” instead of philosophy–because those who are hard-core against it do so because of their ideology–a flawed ideology in my humble opinion.

  • Anonymous

    Jim- this just shows that you don’t understand the basic responsibilities of the citizens of this country.  These workshops for civil disobedience aren’t workshops that people hold for the sake of being anti-everything.  These are held to teach people how to remain civil, how to be most effective without resorting to violence, to control themselves and be bigger than those they are opposing.  They are designed to keep people safe in these circumstances, among their own group and in the community. 

    People who believe THEIR OWN LAND may be raped and poisoned are very passionate about their ownership of it (as I am) and feel that it is criminal for a state to allow forced integration or even unchecked industrial development to go on in rural communities.  These workshops are helpful in keeping people who might otherwise not be able to channel their frustrations and pain of this issue in a constructive and non-violent way.

    It is our civil duty to keep The People’s interests foremost in our society.  It is our RIGHT to fight to keep what belongs to us safe and valuable.  It is NOT a right to poison or render useless someone else’s property. 

    Stop repeating propaganda talking points.  You sound like a corporate shill even if you claim to not take a dime from gas companies.  I will never understand how people can be so ignorant as to be convinced to do or want things that go against their own best interests.  It’s shameful.  

  • Connor Gibson

    If by philosophy you mean being opposed to continued groundwater contamination, uncontrolled methane (read: climate disrupting) releases, radioactive leftovers and heavy salts flowing downstream after inadequate wastewater “treatment,” the sludge impoundments….wait, isn’t “natural” gas supposed to be squeaky clean?!

    I wish I could call it undeniable, but the oil and gas industry has shown they are capable of denying a hell of a lot, even when evidence like internal government documents/communications published by the New York Times lays out just how negligent the industry has been in their greedy rush toward a lucrative resource. Clean water be damned, crippled climate be damned, private property be damned, frack it all, frack it now, frack you very much.

    Let affected people worry after there’s nothing they can do and a crowd of cozy executives walks away smugly.

    I suppose it is a pretty unreasonable philosophy to demand not to be lied to, bought, sold and then poisoned.

  • Jim Willis

    All I can say is, “more talking points from those opposed to drilling.” Your opening statement is simply a recitation of the inaccurate views propagated by those opposed to drilling. That is, they are allegations with no basis in fact.

    I find it interesting that people react the most strongly when I simply use the opposition’s own words to show who they are and how they operate.

  • Anonymous

    Philosophy? Ideology? Fossil fuels? Mr. Willis, you just don’t
    get it.


    You want to turn it into some lofty debate about “the future
    of America,” and that we are on the wrong side. It’s much simpler than that.


    It’s our way of life we’re defending. Our water and our land. For most of us, everything we own is tied to the value of our homes. Our property values will tank. Our roads will be trashed. Our assessments will rise.
    We won’t be able to get mortgages. No one will want to buy our property. 

    We aren’t fooled. Ideology has nothing to do with it. It’s OUR future you want to take from us. 

    We’re not going to let a bunch of carpetbagging multinational energy companies come here and turn NY into another industrial zone, squeeze us dry, then leave us flat. They may be able to bribe a few large landowners, but the rest of us don’t want the money. OUR lives are NOT FOR SALE.

  • Anonymous

    @MarcellusDN:disqus , I agree with you whole heartedly. There is no basis in fact provided by the anti-drilling camp. The NY Times Drilling Down Series is a perfect example of Ideology–a much better word than philosophy, since these anti-gas folks are clearly indoctrinated. Take this internal document from Chesapeake: Clearly, shale drilling is the economic choice, and a lot of folks just don’t want to accept it. I’m also very skeptical of studies coming out of supposedly peer reviewed journals: I for one, am not even sure what this article is saying–would I water a plant with fracking waste? Absolutely not! There are safely regulated applications of waste water. Perhaps the most efficient, fracking waste water is applied to roadwork sites to keep down dust generation. The difference between tarmac and a tree is so blatantly obvious, that the point of this study is somewhat [email protected]:disqus should take some time to qualify his arguments with fact. Moreover, the [email protected]:disqus is citing is enough to convince anyone with a reasonable, rational head on their shoulders. 

  • Alex Lotorto

    Ok dude, let’s put a 10 to 15 acre industrial site on the property next door to your house and see home much your property value crashes. As someone who works construction, I have put a lot of sweat into my house and its mortgage. If people like you bring down the worth of my largest asset that my blood and sweat have paid for, you’ll be happy if all that I do is a civil disobedience.

  • Jim Willis

    Thanks for commenting. But your comment misses the point of the civil disobedience training. They’re assembling not because they’re afraid of property values decreasing, but because they believe fossil fuels are evil. You have a valid concern–I’m not saying you don’t. I’m just saying the root motivation, the ideological view, has to do with a small group of people who want to force their view on everyone else–that is, no more fossil fuels. That, to me, is wrong.

    We can find ways of allowing safe drilling that does not affect property values, or at least minimizes the effect. Instead of viewing all “extractive industries” as the devil himself, the attitude should be “let’s figure out how to make sure it doesn’t harm any residents, but still allow those who want it on their land to go ahead.” And in the end, this cheap natural gas under our feet will benefit everyone, not just landowners and “rich” gas companies. Completely different mindset than the meeting on the Lake. Accept that it’s going to happen and work to ensure it’s safe for everyone–then I’d be happy to join you.

  • Melissa Czerniawski

    To make the claim that the entirety of the anti-fracking population opposes hydrofracking for the same reason is, blatantly, presumptuous. Regardless of any social, political, economic, or environmental issue there are assumptions made by some number of people, but to attribute the active opposition of hydraulic fracturing on a mass scale to a simple assumption is almost humorous; it is akin to claiming that all white racists dislike Osama bin Laden not because he was a leader of terrorism, but because he wasn’t white.  While “natural gas may burn cleaner than coal and oil and produce less carbon” (according to what we shall not know, as many seek to discredit and cast aside the value of science), that does not make it a VIABLE option. Even if this statement is true, why should the lesser of two evils be the only choice offered to us? Is it fair that this “option” be force-fed to us because that is what big business is dishing out? Is it better that the pollution of this option (hydrofracking) be more heavily concentrated in our water than our air? The distribution of pollution is just a switching of mediums, but it all ends up in the same place- in our bodies. It ends up in our bodies and in the earth, distributed among the air we breathe, the water we drink, and the plants and animals we consume. How is that “user-friendly” for anyone? For the earth? The “so-called alternative energy sources” of solar and wind are, in fact, alternative sources of energy, and for this reason are called as such across the globe. They experience less resistance because it is generally agreed that they have less adverse effects on human health and the environment than that of hydraulic fracturing, and big business is not shoving these methods down peoples’ throats.

  • Ren Ostry

    We are in fact assembling because we are afraid of property values decreasing, among other things. This is not a group of uneducated crazy bohemians, as you make us out to be. We are economists, business men and women, organizers, researchers, students, and educators. We are allies and people from affected communities. And when I say affected, I mean individuals from counties and towns throughout the north-east where asthma rates are increasing, instances of water pollution is rising, and yes, property value is decreasing. Thank you for another excellent talking point in the opposition of fracking!

  • mr.weather2448

     mcbetsy brought up excellent points.

    Natural gas releases far less carbon dioxide when burned than any other fossil fuel, yes. Yet it releases more methane than other fossil fuels (methane is significantly more potent of a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide, it can trap more heat).  And it isn’t cleaner when it comes to extraction, treatment and disposal.  There are alternatives and they need to be researched and developed on a mass-scale.  Economically, jobs in alternative energy will replace jobs in the fossil fuel industry, so saying we must drill because it “provides jobs” (while true), doesn’t justify drilling since there is a viable alternative. 

    People won’t show up to this civil disobedience training simply because they got nothing better to do.  Yea people have different reasons for being anti-drilling.  Frankly it doesn’t matter what their reasons are.  I know I am because humanity can’t afford to wait to get off fossil fuels, and this is supported by science (there is no real debate among scientists).  Call it an ideology, sure what the heck, tell me what’s wrong with demanded a clean and just future where humanity lessens its affects on itself and its home?

  • Jim Willis

    You’re welcome.

  • Jim Willis

    I tell you what’s wrong with it–you don’t have the right to demand it of me. I don’t give a fig about your nirvana of a sustainable energy future. I want fossil fuels that are here and now and are responsible for helping to create the greatest country on earth–the USA. We (including you) are the recipients of all sorts of wonderful benefits because of cheap energy. If you want to go sustainable, get off the grid and do it. Me? I want natural gas, and oil. “Someday” will take care of itself. I live in today.

  • Jim Willis

    Once again, as I’ve responded to others in this thread–you have the freedom to get off the grid and chose to do sustainable energy. Please do! But I don’t want to! And you should not have the right to force me to do it. Plain and simple. It’s a freedom thing. Called the Constitution. It guarantees me rights too. As long as my rights don’t trample yours (and they aren’t), I should be able to get my energy in the way I want it–natural gas.

  • Jim Willis

    Not talking points and not propaganda. This site is my own views plain and simple. No one wants to poison you. If I thought my land and health and family were threatened, I too would engage in civil disobedience. I’m saying–IT’S NOT HAPPENING. There is no mass pollution, there is no poisoning of groundwater supplies.

    Are there ever problems? Of course there are. Do accidents happen? Yes. Do some drillers need to be slapped with fines and in some cases stopped? Yes. But it’s not all drillers, and accidents don’t happen every day. This is not the environmental disaster anti-drillers make it out to be.

    I happen to think it’s in the best interests of all citizens to have cheap, clean burning natural gas at low prices in this country. Tell me how that’s “against” my own best interest as a consumer?

  • Anonymous

    Jim- you are apparently not apprised of how these companies work.  They are ALREADY planning to ship massive amounts of this gas overseas.  If we are going to suffer for it by losing our landscapes…YES IT WILL BE AN INDUSTRIAL AREA where I live once this begins.  It wouldn’t matter if they poison the land or not.  They are getting the fresh water from somewhere depleting precious supplies and then ruining it from ever being safely potable for humans again.  

    The plan is to ship it overseas because if they don’t, they can’t say there’s a high enough demand for it to charge more money.  Those companies are as UN-AMERICAN as they come.  They take our tax money in subsidies, they push the media AND their bought and paid for politicians and whine that we have to become energy independent.  Well, wouldn’t it be more sensible to keep that gas in there and use it as we need it for as long as we can until we develop more sustainable renewable resources?  Isn’t that what they call it?  The “gateway fuel”???  That is their talking point right?  That’s BS…they are going to drain every last well of every last bit of any fossil fuel until it’s gone and it makes no difference to them if America is energy independent for a decade or a century as long as they can drive up demand by selling it to China and India rather than keeping it cheap here.  Your talking point about it being cheap and clean burning is a complete and utter lie.  

  • Connor Gibson

    “Your opening statement is simply a recitation of the inaccurate views
    propagated by those opposed to drilling. That is, they are allegations
    with no basis in fact.”

    Okay, so here begins the cyclical argument of “I HAVE ALL THE FACTS AND YOU DON’T!!!” This site is so littered with industry talking points I feel like I spent the day talking with John Hanger.

    But way to unveil my role in the giant liberal conspiracy to destroy our country. Let’s check out those “inaccurate views:”

    Methane leaks:
    3.6-7.9% of methane is leaked, 30% more than conventional gas extraction. “Compared to coal, the footprint of shale gas is at least 20% greater and perhaps more than twice as great on the 20-year horizon and is comparable when compared over 100 years.”
    Source study:

    Presence of radium and uranium in soil and water samples; presence of benzene and other hazardous chemicals before and after treatment by industrial wastewater facility:

    Internal EPA presentation including environmental concerns (hexavalent chromium contamination, “improper disposal,” methane/VOCs, etc):

    EPA brief noting that total dissolved solids (the heavy salts I mentioned) cannot be removed by the facilities currently accepting fracking wastewater:

    Inspection document about leaking impoundment (lasted 2 months):

    This is why NYTimes is being attacked–pretty damning considerations, and I only pulled one example for each of my claims. Note that while it’s on their website, this is NOT their material.

    Your claim, not that I assume you personally are dishonest about it, is that fracking should be done so long as its done safely. That sounds great, but thus far the industry has failed miserably at doing so and relies upon people like yourself to sweet talk fracking so that people calm down just enough for the industry to not actually make any improvements. State regulators are woefully under-equipped to deal with all of the issues even if they aren’t bought and sold.

    @NYforShale:disqus, I doubt anything I post will change your accusations about me being an uninformed “indoctrinated” alarmist, especially since source material for NYT’s Drilling Down, but that doesn’t change the fact that it’s SOURCE MATERIAL, not claims made by a journalist. As for using wastewater to stifle road dust–that is insanity, similar to spreading coal ash (“coal combustion byproducts”) on our roads when it snows. You’re just spraying severely contaminated material indiscriminately, and it all winds up in the waterways we were trying to keep clean in the first place. NYforShale = NYforSale to the highest bidding fracker, communities be damned.

  • AdaMaeCompton

    so, i don’t care about my pristine predrill tests and my now-flammable water? i took a 14k mile roadtrip last year and didn’t feel a bit of guilt. the industry should feel a lot of guilt for what they’ve done to my water, tho.

    you are wrong, sir, it’s not about fossil fuels per se. it’s about how corporations treat humans: poorly.

    (at least, for me)

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  • Anonymous

    Here is how I am interpreting the email: I see two quotes that stand out – 1. “ban fracking and stand strong against all fossil fuel extraction” and 2. (most telling, in my opinion) “Get NY off dirty fuel.”

    So all of you who are in support of this training, but saying it’s about property values, etc., are also misting over the point of the training bluntly stated in the email.  It’s not so much about the dangers of drilling; it’s more about energy preferences.  At least, according to the email, that’s what it appears to boil down to.

    I watched a video with Mark Ruffalo last week, provided by one of your own followers.  In it he revealed his motive (and probably the one subscribed to by many other anti-drillers in NY) stating, (paraphrased) if drilling comes to NY, it will kill the sustainable energy movement.  Well, gee, I’m sorry, but the sustainable energy movement has barely taken its first steps while NG development has been happening for decades and the extraction processes improving constantly.

    As I’ve seen Jim mention in his own comments a few times, if YOU chose to use energy that works only when the sun is shining or the wind is blowing, that is your choice.  But I would like to see a move towards NG powered vehicles using the energy found under our own feet, especially in light of our country’s current financial situation.  That’s MY philosophy, that’s MY right.

    What your civil disobedience has amassed to so far is yelling down your opposition, often times by water jug toting ignoramuses who can’t even defend their claims of contaminated water by explaining or defending their own water tests.  What is going to change?  Are you going to start presenting something other than hairdressers claiming barium poisoning or the now-ancient (and false) claims like Dunkard Creek?  The percentages presented aren’t much help either, because one has to actually understand what those figures represent – and I’ve seen both sides of the drill or not to drill interpret them to support their own sides.  Studies like Duke’s?  Sorry, but it states the obvious that naturally-occurring methane is going to be higher in areas of drilling activity – because that’s where the gas IS!  Even the authors of both the Cornell Coal study and Duke admit there were short-comings with their reports and their data was incomplete!

    If there were more substance to your claims, and the benefits didn’t outweigh the risks for more than a few, NY would not be moving forward and drilling would not be occurring in more than half of our country.

  • Anonymous

    You are uninformed at best, ignorant at worst, as evidenced by this comment you posted on a newspaper report: “Dunkard Township (Greene County) has had an uptick in drug crime with
    the influx of Texans, Oklahomans, and Canadians into our community,
    including our first meth lab, which burned to the ground. Apparently,
    drilling workers use meth to keep themselves awake during their 10-12
    hour shifts. And of course tired, impaired workers lead to mistakes and

    O&G company employees are subjected to pre-employment drug tests, random drug tests during employment, as well as in the case of an injury, all in the form of both hair follicle and urinalysis.  Most reputable O&G companies demand their subcontractors abide by the same drug testing rules they impose on their own employees.  Yes, there are people in the field who use drugs, but it is a matter of time before they are caught or made to leave.  It is a matter of not just continued employment for those like my husband who enjoy their jobs, but also one of safety.

    You want to make assumptions, well, so can I.  Your comments make it clear you know LITTLE to NOTHING of the industry or its employees and I am sure you are one of those who will continue to make unfounded accusations without one iota of investigation on your part or effort to discover other than what your narrow mind has already come to believe as true.  As such, anything you say further will fall upon deaf ears on my part.

  • Tom Roughneck

    There have been 14 documented attacks on Gas drilling infrastructure, 4 of them involving gunshots. Domestic terrorism is covered under the patriot act which Obamadinijad renewed. This is not a laughing matter and this issue is literally a Deadly Force issue resulting in life or death for the eco- terrorists’ target, or the Roughneck who fires back at said terrorist. I monitor a number of the anti-drilling  sites and attend public forums where I have heard these peaceniks advocate” running trucks off the road” and” taking matters into there own hands.” The antis don’t stop at targeting the drilling industry, they also advocate harassment of the individuals in their community that signed leases or agreed to pipeline or compressor station sites on their property.

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  • Anonymous

    You know, we’re not all a bunch of wild-eyed, militant nuts. You don’t have to be even close to “radical” to recognize that fracking holds environmentally dangerous potential. Keuka Lake has been a part of my life since 1949. I was two months old then, my first of 62 consecutive summers “on the lake.” 
    That water! To plunge deep into its bracing, refreshing coolness on a hot summer day is part of why we keep coming back, year after year. Spending many thousands of dollars in cottage and boat rentals, groceries and at the Diner in Penn Yan or The Village Tavern in Hammondsport; touring the wineries; fishing; taking the kids to the Glenn Curtis Museum; more swimming; skiing; sailing; kayaking…. think we’d do any of that on a body of water containing leached toxic chemicals? No. Sadly, we’d grieve the loss of this beloved, beloved place. And we would never forget the reason it was lost. But we -and so many like us- would be lost to the local economy, forever.You people in the Natural Gas industry have a lot more opposition to this process than you can possibly imagine. I’m a 62 year old businessman with a family. And the thought of such harm coming to those precious waters makes me think that attending a civil-disobedience camp to prepare for serious protest of your actions is not such a bad idea at all. Missed this year’s. But will be watching for notice of another in ’12. In the meantime, I’d lawyer up if I were you. We’re not taking this one sitting on our hands.

  • Anonymous

    Hey Willis – Who is “they?” A lot of us “regular folk” – hard working taxpayers who catch a blessed break from it all once a year when we cool our toes in that beautiful lake – think y’all are nuts to even speak of the notion of doing anything that could remotely come within a country mile of leaching toxic pollution into Keuka Lake. “They” are many of “us” who do, indeed, question how much longer we here on this earth can continue to burn fossil fuels as if there were simply no consequences at all. That’s just pure and utter nonsense. 

  • Jim Willis

    Thanks for making my point. 🙂

  • Anonymous

    Bravo NEPAgal!!! I’ve worked in the pipeline industry for 22 years, close to 30 states, and 2 foreign countries. It makes me want to vomit how some real estate agent or store clerk tries to tell me about my industry that I work everyday. Misinformed media BS.

  • Anonymous

    Let’s be clear. I do not agree with you or the industry’s position on hydraulic fracturing. And, as it turns out, there indeed is evidence of contamination issues concerning groundwater. See:

  • Anonymous

    Nonsense. I think most of us recognize that we have been dependent on fossil fuels and likely will be for the foreseeable future. Recognition, however, that this dependency has come freighted with severe environmental consequences, is not radical. For that matter, the environment is not a “radical” concept, for heaven’s sake. It’s life itself. In fact, degrading the environment could be said to be disrespecting God. What goes around, comes around. You may (selfishly) “live in today,” but I, sir, have an eye on the tomorrow of my six children and two grandchildren. Where is your sense of responsibility to future generations? Oh, why ask? I can see that you do not care.

  • Anonymous

    You’re “free” to be obnoxious. And doing a pretty good job of preserving that right.

  • Jim Willis

    Well, yes–I AM saying that the attitude we must shed our “dependence on fossil fuels” quickly, at a very high cost, IS radical. If the shoe fits… I’m not saying we should never make a change to renewables or that they are bad (although all forms of energy, even renewables have problems, something often overlooked in the debate).

    I’m certainly not against stewardship of the bountiful resources God has granted us. I’m not “for” pollution. Being in favor of hydraulic fracturing and getting the plentiful gas beneath us is not incompatible with respecting nature. And being realistic about the time frame for using fossil fuels is not robbing anyone’s future.

  • Jim Willis

    Thanks, I try. 😉

  • Anonymous

    So, where does this kind of dialogue get us? You note your constitutional rights. The 1st Amendment guarantees that you CAN say whatever you like, but leaves to your moral values whether you SHOULD say certain things. When your exploitation of a natural resource results in negative collateral impact affecting others beyond yourself, then you are treading on the rights and wellbeing of others. Do you not care whether Keuka Lake winds up polluted if it turns out that nearby fracking does, indeed, result in leaching toxic chemicals into the lake?

  • Anonymous

    You both somehow slip right past Ms. Wozniak’s point: she does not trust your industry because of widely held perceptions that it is guided by the same mindset that drives the coal and oil industries. If either of you had any experience with the coal fields of Eastern Kentucky you would…or, at least might…recognize the myriad reasons for deep distrust of corporate coal. Are you telling us that Gas is marching to a different, more environmentally responsible drummer?

  • Jim Willis

    Of course I care. I’m not in favor of Keuka Lake ending up being polluted–and I’m saying it won’t be due to hydraulic fracturing. There is a set-back provision in the new drilling regulations–no one will be drilling on the shores of the lake. Why is it always those who are in favor of drilling are questioned about their motives or morality, but never those who oppose it? I say, try looking at it the other way round for a bit. But…I will say this: thank you for commenting and for doing so in a polite and civil way. Never hurts to be reminded that we all should keep a civil tongue in the heat of our arguments.

  • Jim Willis

    I feel like a broken record, but that I need to keep saying it: Gas drilling is not perfect and I’m not in favor of handing out a blank check to drillers to do whatever they want. Some regulation and oversight is a good thing. Carefully crafted contracts for leasing one’s land is a good thing. “Trust but verify” is a good thing (thank you Ronald Reagan). Ms. Wozniak is entitled to her opinion that she does not trust drillers–fine. She is not entitled to her own facts, however–and the fact is, Dunkard Creek’s fish kill was not due to hydraulic fracturing.

  • Anonymous

    Those of us with enough time around the field and who grew up with both mining and drilling know when our knowledge falls on deaf ears.  I no longer try to educate those who choose to remain ignorant.  The information is out there, not only from industry sites, but also in the form of unbiased reports, but I have found the extremist anti-drill sector falls into a number of categories
    1. They want the research and the information to fall into their hands.  If it doesn’t, they don’t bother to look into anything themselves – it’s so much easier to believe what they have been told or read.
    2. When faced with data, statistics, regulations, etc. their first statement is that the one providing them is a liar or an industry shill.
    3. Add to that the myriad of those who have agendas that have nothing to do with fears of environmental damage, they simply want an alternative choice, so they go about pounding the “our water is going to be poisoned” drum to further their own agenda.

    If people took the time to visit drilling areas – including Dimock – then you will realize the truth in the middle is boring and won’t ever see the light of day in print – the fact that the regulations and accepted procedures actually do a good job of avoiding spills and other problems.  In fact, the Dimock situation led to another string of casing being used in the cementing process and numerous other regulations being put into effect in February of this year in PA.

    Now back to what the case in point was regarding my comment to Juliann Wozniak.  She did not attack the industry in the post I copied from her, she attacked the workers indicating her lack of knowledge of the regulations regarding hiring protocol and I am sure this is just the tip of the iceberg regarding her ignorance.  It worries me that people who would stoop so low and take this “civil disobedience” training will come out thinking anything goes.  Because of their lack of knowledge and unwillingness to listen or learn, I worry if “civil disobedience” will include violence against those who work in the field.  A Cabot storage building was the subject of arson a few months back – was this a case of “civil disobedience”?

  • Anonymous

    Oh and one more thing about the coal SDWN – my grandfather was a coal miner in Wyoming State.  No, it did not cause the mass damage the industry did in Kentucky – I’ve seen the pictures and heard the stories of mountain tops being leveled.  However, I have also been around those who have suffered the effects of either working the coal mines or burning its fuel.  Because of the vast amount of acreage it takes for a coal mine, there is little hope for reclamation and don’t get me started on the effects to humans.

    NG drilling takes a smaller amount of land and is being reclaimed.  It is cleaner burning and could enable the US to be energy independent AND possibly a world market player in the future.  Yes, there are some risks that come from exacting it.  For many of us, the benefits outweigh the risks. It is not my place to try to convince people of this because everyone has their own levels of acceptable risk.

    If Wozniak’s fear is based on past indiscretions of another industry, while I don’t agree it should be, I might be able to see the point.  But again, she resorted to taking her frustrations out against the NG industry’s workers via name-calling and unfounded accusations based on a few incidents, leading me to wonder how else she might elect to show her dissatisfaction through “civil disobedience.”

  • Candy

    excellent, keep it up since only china is slated to benefit from the gas from these wells.

  • Anonymous

    There has only been one LNG export facility in the US and it is located at the tip of Alaska.  It is slated to be or has been closed.  The next LNG export facility is to be located in Louisiana, but because of the strict inspections it must go through during each of the conversion stages, is not slated to be open until at least 2014.  Conversion – as in converting it from an import terminal to an export.  So, Candy, it will probably be prudent then to see if the US is, in fact, providing for its own needs and might have an NG surplus to sell on the world markets.

  • Anonymous

    I confess that I have not seen – or overlooked – this concession to reason in your previous posts. I think it’s entirely reasonable and rational to ask the NGas industry this question: can you ensure – without qualification – that hydraulic fracturing will not result in the contamination of groundwater with toxic chemicals? And are you willing to drop the “why single us out” defense against disclosure of all chemicals deployed in fracking? Why single you out? Because we’re talking about water here. We ARE water. We cannot survive without water. And it is entirely reasonable and rational to be concerned that our consumption of contaminated water will result in our premature misery and demise. Please clarify why that is such an unreasonable request to make of you.

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