PA Radicals Sue to Stop $1.1B in DCNR Funding from Gas Leases

In June, radical anti-drillers from the Pennsylvania Environmental Defense Foundation won a case at the PA Supreme Court by the skin of their teeth (PA Supreme Court Hands Antis Partial Victory re State Land Drilling). The case dealt with the narrow issue of how PA can spend revenue raised by leasing and allowing drilling for oil and gas under state-owned land. A divided court ruled that money from royalties must be used only for Big Green causes, and cannot be used even to fund operations at the Dept. of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR). The decision was based, in part, on PA’s so-called Environmental Rights Amendment, “guaranteeing” the “right” to “clean air, pure water, and to the preservation of the natural, scenic, historic and esthetic values of the environment”–without defining how those “rights” are to be administered. The radical lawyer who won the case then attempted to use that narrow decision–in a case about funding the DCNR–to make the preposterous claim that PA’s state budget, as drafted, is “unconstitutional” (see Lawyer Says PA Budget Unconstitutional Based on Enviro Rights Law). The same radicals are back making the same wild claims–putting $1.1 billion in DCNR funding at risk…

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