This is without a doubt the most difficult article MDN has had to author—on many levels. Yesterday, New York’s Commissioner of the Dept. of Environmental Conservation (DEC), Joe Martens, announced he would not release the Supplemental Generic Environmental Impact Statement (SGEIS) today, Feb. 13, because of a delay he’s blaming on the state health department. We previously reported that if the SGEIS was not released today, final regulations would not be adopted by Feb. 27 to allow fracking to move forward. In a statement yesterday, Martens seemed to say that’s not necessarily the case. His statement is confusing and contradictory, and frankly no one fully understands it.
MDN will break this all down and tell you what we know, what we don’t know, and what we think will happen. We have statements from State Health Commissioner Shah and DEC Commissioner Martens along with comments from various organizations with their interpretation of what it means. We will take you through the process chapter and verse—so this is a long post. We won’t keep you in suspense: We don’t know exactly what to make of Martens’ comments. It’s muddled, we believe intentionally so. The real person to keep your eye on in this theatre of the absurd is Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who seems to want to have his cake and eat it too…
Because of miracle of hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) and the natural gas it generates, and because that abundant new source of natural gas burns cleaner than any other fossil fuel, air pollution in Pennsylvania declined—significantly—from 2008 to 2011. So we tip our hat and say a big, “Thank you for fracking.”
Some of the stats recently reported by PA to the federal EPA in a report on air pollution (required every three years):
Not since the Viet Nam protests have hippie and hippie wannabes been so fired up over an issue as they are about fracking. The fracking fight has injected meaning and purpose back in to their pathetic lives. When hippies get fired up, they need an audience to listen to them. What better audience than the local (captive) monthly town board meeting? Hippies attend these meetings as a form of harassment to endlessly recycle the same pabulum that fracking kills, fracking pollutes, fracking yada yada yada—month in and month out.
Council members for the Town of Sanford, NY, tucked in the outer edge of Broome County, had heard enough yammering from a select few local residents on the topic of fracking, so they passed a resolution that there would be no more lecturing on fracking (either for or against) during public comment periods at board meetings. Whoops! That’s like waving a red flag at a bull. You just don’t deny a hippie their three minutes of freak-show time before the microphones…
MDN has been reporting about West Virginia’s prospects to get an ethane cracker plant, like, forever. Every few months we hear a rumor of “we’re talking with companies about a cracker plant.” But a deal to actually build a cracker plant in WV never seems to materialize. Two days ago we reported on the first really solid, possible cracker deal we’ve heard of in some time (see “Small” Ethane Cracker Plant Coming to Wheeling, WV). As we stated in the article, we’re cautiously optimistic, but still a tad skeptical.
However, Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin and his big smile may know something we don’t:
Engineering firm RETTEW, a firm that does a lot of work in the Marcellus and Utica Shale drilling industry, has just received an award for their work on a Chesapeake Energy project to reconstruct more than 400 miles of rural roads in Pennsylvania at no cost to the public while reducing waste by nearly 100 percent. A hearty congratulations to RETTEW for their innovative approach, and to Chesapeake for their proactive program to preserve rural roads in active drilling areas.
Apologies in advance to MDN subscribers who voted for and/or support our petulant man-child president with tyrannical tendencies, Barack H. Obama. You’re excused from reading this post. It may give you a stroke.