THE REASONS

GOVERNOR WOLF PUTS THE INDUSTRY'S INTERESTS BEFORE OURS.

  • Governor-elect Wolf was asked for comment when New York banned fracking. He called the decision "unfortunate".

  • In September 2016, Yesenia Bane, special assistant to Governor Wolf, represented him at an industry conference in Pittsburgh. She told the audience that Wolf was willing to pressure NY Governor Cuomo to reverse his decision made months earlier to reject water quality permits for the Constitution pipeline. An audience member said he had never heard of a governor offering such a thing.

  • The Wolf administration talks about a 100-year cycle of shale gas development and says every county in the state will be affected by infrastructure build-out within a few years. Climate scientists are urging us to transition away from fossil fuels by 2050.

  • Governor Wolf commissioned the Pipeline Infrastructure Task Force and put DEP Secretary John Quigley in charge. At the inaugural meeting, Quigley said the goal of the task force was to build public acceptance of the industry, not to protect the people and our environment from the industry.

  • Governor Wolf moved $24 million from an alternative energy fund to his PIPE program that provides grants to schools, hospitals, businesses, and communities to build the last stretch of pipeline needed to make them natural gas customers. One of the first recipients of a $1 million grant was a company called Glenn O. Hawbaker, a member of the Marcellus Shale Coalition whose president donated $7500 to Wolf's campaign.

  • Governor Wolf blogged that he had worked in close collaboration with state and local officials to close the deal on the Royal Dutch Shell cracker plant in Beaver County. Shell was given an historic $1.65 billion in tax breaks to sweeten the deal.  Cracker plants crack open ethane molecules to extract ethylene used to manufacture single-use plastics. Ethane contributes to climate change in three ways: it is a greenhouse gas, it helps create smog, the third largest contributor to global warming after carbon dioxide and methane, and it extends methane's life in the atmosphere in its most heat-trapping form.

  • Shortly after finalizing the cracker plant deal, Governor Wolf released a report he had commissioned that found that Western Pennsylvania could support four more cracker plants.

  • Governor Wolf entered into a partnership with the governors of Ohio and West Virginia to attract shale-related manufacturing to the region.

  • Although he's been asked many times, Governor Wolf has never visited an impacted community to see for himself what fracking is doing to our communities and natural resources. Elected officials, journalists, researchers, and others from across the globe have visited Pennsylvania and what they've seen here has informed moratoria and bans.

 

AND THE PROBLEMS DON'T STOP WITH GOVERNOR WOLF

  • The oil and gas industry has Harrisburg in a stranglehold. Governor Wolf's latest Facebook video says of the lobbyists, "They roll into Harrisburg like they own the place. And they do."

  • Meanwhile, more than 300 cases of water contamination from fracking have been confirmed by the DEP. Thousands more have been reported. And still more are being contaminated by incompetent and indifferent pipeline companies that can damage our communities with abandon because they know the state isn't going to stop them.

  • Pennsylvanians are the externalities in a business plan of an industry that dictates the state's energy policy.

 

LEARN MORE ABOUT SHALE GAS DEVELOPMENT AND ITS IMPACTS IN PENNSYLVANIA

  • More than 1200 peer-reviewed studies are among the sources summarized in The Compendium of Scientific, Medical, and Media Findings Demonstrating Risks and Harms of Fracking co-authored by Concerned Health Professionals of New York and Physicians for Social Responsibility. When Governor Ed Rendell opened Pennsylvania to fracking, there were only six studies. Before long, public health professionals started identifying risks. "Now we see those risks have turned into human harms and people are getting sick," Sandra Steingraber, one of the eight co-authors, told Rolling Stone. "And we in this field have a moral imperative to raise the alarm."

  • Shalefield Stories provides testimonials of impacted people in Pennsylvania and other areas of the country where fracking is being done. The stories have been published in two-volumes that have been sold to raise money to purchase water, air monitors, and air scrubbers for people who need them. 

  • In December 2016, a network of organizations held a People's Hearing on FERC's Abuses of Power and Law at the National Press Club in Washington. For years, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has rubberstamped natural gas pipeline projects and manipulated the rules to favor the industry. The People's Dossier includes all of the testimony delivered that day.

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Questions? Contact us at betterpathpa@gmail.com    

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