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Ball strikes critical tone on fracking

Tuesday, August 16, 2011 - 04:32 PM

Senator Ball, left, with anti-fracking activist/filmaker Josh Fox. (Courtesy of the Senator's office.)

Republican State Senator Greg Ball of Patterson just sent out a notice about his tour of Pennsylvania with anti-hydrofracking activist and Oscar-nominated filmmaker Josh Fox.

“I want nothing more than to create jobs in New York. But I will not  roll out the red carpet for companies that are not willing to be held accountable,” Ball said in the statement. “I saw beautiful communities booming with economic activity. I also heard horror stories from families and farmers who’ve suffered health problems, lost livestock and seen a 90 percent devaluation of their homes and properties."

Ball's hosting a local forum on hydrofracking next week, and, with his Tea Party base of support, appears to be developing into an unlikely opponent of the natural gas drilling process.

Check out the long list of "tour findings" he says he expects to raise next week and in the debate about fracking in Albany:

  • Lack of full disclosure about proprietary chemical formula used in the fracking process.
  • Lack of protection for workers at drilling sites from fracking fluids and waste.
  • Lack of land owner understanding about lease agreements and royalties.
  • Lack of third-party chemical testing for contaminants in land owner’s water
  • Lack of responsiveness by companies to pay for damages involving lost value of property as a result of contamination of water and soil, lost productivity of land, lost livestock and crops.
  • Lack of local employment by the drilling companies (Chesapeake Energy). The workers at the Chesapeake site rigs were transported into Pennsylvania from Texas, Louisiana and Connecticut.  Reason given is because it’s too costly to train local citizens.
  • Seemingly aggressive unethical sales practices used by the companies “land man” to encourage land owners to sign leases.
  • Lack of sharing of information on contamination between land owners.
  • Lack of air quality and social monitoring.
  • Lack of process to respond to or to Insure against devaluation of land owner’s property.
  • No presumption of causation by the companies, they seem to be able to easily deny damages to water, soil, lost value of property and lost productivity.
  • Absence of environmental impact analysis process
  • No disclosures or warning statements on lease agreements concerning the financial, health and environmental risks of hydrofracking.
  • Lack of full disclosure of past violations and spills by companies.
  • Lack of commitment to remediate soil and water upon contamination.
  • Lack of water from trusted governmental third parties instead of companies.
  • Lack of regulations on campaign contributions to chairs of environment committees in state government.
  • Lack of fine or penalty structure in response to contamination of water and soil.
  • Lack of evacuation plan for local EMS.

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Comments [5]

Thank you shrub and dirty dick.  They sneaked legislation through allowing much, if not all of this.

Aug. 21 2011 11:21 PM
Mcmackinplumbing

no frackin mcmackin   Frack chemicals for production drilling and fracking are being imported fron China cant find any msds reports on line from China chemical suppliers web sites. This is bad.  Drill in America for America , BS  China could be in a position of chemically destroying our countries fresh water supplies  and taking our country down. Ban chemical imports for gas and oil drilling.Save Americas number one resource fresf water

Aug. 20 2011 03:35 PM
Jerry Ravnitzky

Senator Ball,

Your list assumes that it is possible to reclaim the many millions of gallons of hydrofracked water.  There haven't been any scientific studies that indicate this can be done, and certainly not economically.  Our nation's supply of potable water is limited, and there is danger of an acute shortage in many areas.  We might be able to survive without oil and gas but we cannot survive without clean water.  The gas companies seem to feel that the risks of hydrofracking are worth it.  Are they willing to risk their grandchildren's health?  Also, do not underestimate the impact of radiation released into the environment by hydrofracking. 

Aug. 18 2011 06:49 PM
Dana Dolney

Please Senator Ball,
Take your list of findings to Harrisburg and talk some sense into the many politicians that are sacrificing our health, safety and environment for their political gain. We have very few politicians willing to stand up for the people rights, so, we are forced to watch as more and more of our friends and neighbors become the collateral damage in this PA gas rush experiment.
As someone that fights everyday against this injustice, it was encouraging to see a politician willing to look at the face of this, to understand where from our incredibly valid concerns and outrage come. Your constituents are lucky to have a man willing to put the people first.
My own representative had not even thought of the impact on air quality, when I addressed him in Harrisburg, even though he lives in the county with currently the worst air quality (Allegheny) from industries past. He was clueless to the whole of this process. No talk of carcinogens, neurotoxins, ozone, contaminated water, just that he would be willing to support a tax (WHICH WE STILL DON"T EVEN HAVE??!?!?!)
Most other politicians only regurgitate the industries lies (with no repercussions) and their talking points (most quoted the 88,000 jobs again and again to get elected and it turns out state agencies show only about 10,000). They have as little responsibility to tell the truth as they do to protect our health and safety....or so it seems.
Fight for your moratorium! Its the only chance your people have to put their future first.

Aug. 18 2011 02:43 PM
tjw

hope its not just a tea party ploy supported by boone pickens and exxon

Aug. 18 2011 12:57 PM

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