EARTHblog » Aaron Mintzes
July 3, 2013
The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act passed in 2010. Section 1504 of that law required the SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission) to issue rules compelling companies that extract oil, natural gas, or minerals to publish payments they make to governments. The purpose here was to lift what is known as the “resource curse”- where some of the most mineral rich nations suffer with some of the poorest populations. The solution: shine the light of transparency on nations led by regimes where mineral riches go to only multinational corporations and corrupt government officials who exploit their indigenous populations.
July 1, 2013
On Tuesday, the same day President Obama delivered his Climate Action Plan speech at Georgetown University, the Maryland Departments of the Environment and Natural Resources (MDE/DNR) released their Best Management Practices report for the Marcellus Shale Safe Drilling Initiative. The comment period extends until August 9. MDE/DNR will host a public meeting July 9 at 7pm in the auditorium of Garrett College. One danger posed by drilling are the externalities the oil and gas industry generates. Externalities involve costs that businesses shift to others not involved in that business- making them external to the businesses’ own operations. Pollution, road construction and maintenance, fire, police, public safety, and public health costs borne by taxpayers exemplify these kinds of externalities. They will overwhelm the economic and environmental abilities of the State to support this heavy industrial activity.