The Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition
Mission statement (see disclaimer at bottom:)
The Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition, Inc. of Luzerne County, based in
Dallas, PA, is a not for profit pending non-profit community educational association, whose members are concerned with the negative effects of the Industrial Process of Drilling for Natural Gas in PA. We are citizens from all walks of life.
1. Natural gas companies need to follow the Precautionary Principle and bear the burden of proof that this activity is safe and will not contaminate our air, water and soil, as it has in other areas of the country. If through mandated environmental impact reports they cannot do this, we ask our state policy makers to ban any future permitting and exploration.
2. If the natural gas companies are serious about applying best practices in their public relations campaigns then we expect them to agree to the most stringent safety measures when it comes to protecting the public. This means not opposing rigid TDS standards for wastewater disposal, strict well casing requirements, using 100% recycling of all waste water and state of the art filtering of all solid waste before landfill disposal. This also means state of the art filtering and cleaning of gas in processing facilities and compressor stations.
3. We demand that all well pads, processing facilities, and compressor stations are located away from any urban or suburban population centers and high value watershed areas. In this respect we ask our state legislators, through independent studies and analysis led by conservation and environmental land management groups, to develop safe drilling corridors in Pennsylvania. This way inevitable accidents will be kept away from critical water source supplies.
4. The people of Pennsylvania demand sovereignty with regard to property management and ownership of their land and there will be no efforts to force pool acreage for gas drilling and development.
5. Zoning and community sovereignty rights remain preeminent and the Commonwealth of PA will respect the inherent rights of the people to decide what they are willing to allow and disallow in local townships and cities.
6. Before any further drilling or permitting of wells in the Marcellus shale in PA will take place, baseline environmental impact studies need to be performed to evaluate our current water quality in source water intake areas, current water discharges into streams and rivers and our current air quality around drilling activities in the state.
7. Fines for violations, spills, accidents and contamination of ground or water supplies need to be re-evaluated and made substantial to act as a deterrent rather than the cost of doing business for these companies. Well plugging bond amounts need to be raised to make it more expensive to abandon a well than pay the fine for walking away; the current scenario for abandoned wells in PA.
8. All Federal environmental law exemptions need to be removed immediately including the: Clean Water Act, Clean Air Act, Safe Drinking Water Act, National Environmental Policy Act , Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act and the Toxic Release Inventory under the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act. The PA. Oil & Gas Act needs to be amended to allow local municipalities to uphold Article 1 Section #2 and #27 of our PA state constitution. Full disclosure of all chemicals used in fracturing, including concentrations is needed.
9. Companies that do not follow these guidelines or have serious or repetitive violations should be banned from any further drilling in PA.
10. We demand our state legislature develop a clean, sustainable alternative energy policy and begin immediate steps to institute development of alternative energy supplies that do not rely on fossil fuels. We ask for establishment of economic incentives for research, development, manufacturing and purchasing of these alternative energy resources so that PA can be the leader in energy independence immediately.
The Precautionary Principle states:"When human activities may lead to morally unacceptable harm that is scientifically plausible but uncertain, actions shall be taken to avoid or diminish that harm. The burden of proof that the activity is safe rests with the industry proposing the activity.
Code of conduct for members:
1. We agree to conduct ourselves with professionalism, dignity and kindness in working towards our goal of protecting our environment and community. We agreed to treat others with respect at all times, even those with differing opinions.
2. We acknowledge that each individual group member in their actions and speech, represent the coalition as a whole, and therefore are reminded to be mindful in speaking and acting in a manner that professionally and respectfully represents the group as a whole.
3. We recognize that the topic of natural gas drilling in our area has been misrepresented by individuals on both sides of the issue, pro and con drilling, with regard to facts and truth. Sometimes this issue has been guided by rhetoric, rumor, hearsay and inflammatory comments that have not been helpful in disseminating truth. In this regard, we acknowledge we will seek out the truth, do diligent research and study, and are willing to back up all statements with legitimate references from those more knowledgeable than ourselves, and who have studied these matters in question.
4. In matters representing our Mission statement, we are free to pursue individual methods of achieving our goals, as long as the ends does not justify a means that violates these principles. In other words, as long as we remain ethical, informed, and respectful, we can work individually to protect our environment and community from the hazards of natural gas drilling.
5. If we are in doubt with regard to our conduct or speech in representing this cause on behalf of the group, we commit to seeking guidance from our fellow group members, and coming together to build a consensus before acting.
6. We agree to work diligently, and to the best of our ability in fulfilling our Mission statement. We also agree to take responsibility for all of our actions.
7. We agree to uphold these principles of conduct as the only membership requirement in the Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition. If we cannot abide by these principles, we agree to inform the other members of this group that we wish to resign from membership in this coalition.
The information contained in this website is for general information purposes only.
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Federal-State Source Documents