June 27, 2012
In 2005, the newly re-elected Bush/Cheney Administration settled in to a second term eager to drastically reshape our nation’s energy policy. Vice President Cheney held a series of closed-door meetings with energy companies, forging a direction so favorable to drillers that the exemptions from our bedrock environmental laws crafted therein became known as the Halliburton loopholes. One of those exemptions (there are a total of seven) declared that the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) would not apply to hydraulic fracturing. Originally passed by Congress in 1974, the SDWA is the main federal law that ensures the quality of Americans' drinking water, especially underground sources of drinking water.
By Gwen Lachelt
June 27, 2012
Will you join us in Washington, DC July 28?
As many of you know, I work everyday to address oil and gas impacts. I’ve dedicated my career to preventing and minimizing the impacts of drilling and fracking. Working with ranchers, conservation organizations, homeowners and local governments, we’ve passed many precedent-setting laws and safeguards to protect landowner rights, public health, water and air quality. And we've permanently protected places like New Mexico's Valle Vidal and Montana's Rocky Mountain Front.
But it’s not enough. We need to take our message to Washington.
By Nick Magel
June 26, 2012
Last week Global Witness released the report, A Hidden Crisis?, documenting the murders of environmental activists around the world. The report examines reported killings of journalist, activists, and community members that have been killed because of their involvement in the defense of the environment. Spanning back to 2002, the report finds that 711 people have been killed in the last decade, or more than one person a week. The report paints a stark picture of the threats community members are facing as the mining industry, logging, and cattle ranching look to develop new lands. Killings have skyrocketed in the past years. Global Witness reports that there were over 106 murders in 2011 alone.
June 13, 2012
The idea that risk is lower when fewer people are exposed to harm may hold true in statistical analysis—but is little comfort to those who actually suffer the consequences. Which is precisely why New York Governor Cuomo’s proposal to allow high-volume gas development in certain locations is a bad idea.
June 13, 2012
Last Thursday I sat in on a hearing for the House Committee for Oversight and Government Reform, Subcommittee on Technology, Information Policy, Intergovernmental Relations, and Procurement Reform, where discussion on the possibility of federally regulating fracking caused such a heated debate that it nearly broke out into a “duel” on the Hill. Secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, Michael Krancer, challenged the director of the Agriculture, Energy, and Environment Program at Cornell University, Dr. Robert Howarth to a duel over the validity of state regulation on environmental issues.