LETTER: Let’s not rush when it comes to fracking

May. 29, 2014 @ 04:58 AM

To the Editor:
In this short session, the [N.C.] Senate has once again put the cart before the horse. Pre-approval of the regulations governing shale gas mining and hydraulic fracturing is very poor governance. It not only insufficiently protects and preserves the health and safety of North Carolinians, it unabashedly opens the door to fly-by-night oil and gas drillers. The risks to water, farmland and general health of residents in the fracking areas and beyond are too great and far exceed the speculative benefits.
In a recent study, “Drilling California: A Reality Check on the Monterey Shale,” author J. David Hughes says, “The oil had always been a statistical fantasy, … little more than a back-of-the-envelope calculation.” Fracking for shale gas was slashed by 96 percent. This adds further evidence and supports the position to wait until there is a far better estimate of shale gas available in N.C. and all the regulations have been submitted, reviewed and voted on by the full legislature. … Industry, if interested, will certainly not turn away merely because we are taking the responsible route to develop proper safeguards.
David Streifford