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Saturday, September 11, 2010

PA: Land of Bubbling & Dwindling Waters

I think we've covered the bubbling methane on the north branch of the Susquehanna ad nauseum, which it truly is at every possible level.

For a post or two, I'd like to switch gears and talk about the fact that even with the extremely dry conditions we are currently experiencing in the MSZ, the Susquehanna River Basin Commission is still allowing water to be taken from many of our damn-near dessicated streams. This is both a tragedy & travesty.

On my trip upstate on September 5th, I took some pics of Bowmans Creek, which is as dry as I ever can recall seeing it. Just a mile or so downstream from the picture at the top of this blog, trucks were still lined up to take water from an approved withdrawal site near a cement plant.  I saw 71 water tankers on the road as I drove through Luzerne, Wyoming and Bradford counties.

SEVENTY-ONE...on a Sunday.

I also stopped by a 2.0 million gallon per day SRBC-approved water withdrawal site near the Wyalusing Bridge.

I used an XL coffee cup as a prop in the pic below to give you an idea of the size of these pipes. We are talking super industrial scale hook-ups, folks.

And there are four of these puppies at this one site.

While pondering the above, check out this article from Workers World.

So, we are allowing one of the most precious and finite resources on this planet, something which we human-types cannot live without, to be sucked from our streams and aquifers, laced with chemicals, and then pumped underground. And in the process, our streams and most ancient of rivers get the side benefit of methane migration, which is just one of the many "Marcellus Multipliers" we will reap for generations to come while the folks from BIG OIL reap their profits from the rape of our natural resources.

And - to boot - one of our candidates for governor of the commonwealth of Pennsylvania doesn't want to tax the gas industry; something almost every other state in this country does. So, Mr. Corbett, who is going to pay for the clean-up of our SuperFund STATE once wholesale drilling gets underway?

Today is the anniversary of an American tragedy. From my perspective, there is an even bigger one unfolding right before our eyes, and in my opinion...many have given up trying to stop it.

I'll be back with a few final thoughts. Time for a walk on this cool morning.

We walked for about 55 minutes on the roads and walking trails near our home. On a beautiful, crisp late summer morning, not unlike the weather nine years ago today, it was a little disappointing to see so few American flags on display, even in my own neighborhood. Ours was one of two flags visible before 9 a.m.

Some Patriot Day.

Anyway, there's been a lot of chatter on the web over the past few weeks about the opposition to drilling and hydrofracturing being monitored by various state and federal agencies. First there were "confidential" memos leaked, then debunked, and then published as the real thing. At this point, I don't even bother to read about it anymore. I already know it's happening.

Here's my two cents. My blog has been visited, multiple times over the past six+ months, by just about every major energy company that has a stake in the Marcellus Shale play. I've also been visited by several of their law firms, their marketing agencies, and their affiliated/support industries. Various agencies of PA & NY state as well as some folks from DC including the DOJ have visited this site repeatedly. I also get countless visits originating from ISPs in Canada, TX, OK, LA and a few other locations with obvious ties to the energy industry. My foreign country count is up to 17 and growing.

All I will offer is this. Through this medium, as a citizen of the United States of America, I am exercising my right to free speech. If you have a challenge with my doing that, I'm pretty sure you know where to find me. Otherwise...blank off and go find some real environmental extremists to attempt to intimidate. To date your feeble efforts are humorous, at best.

P.S. - Have a nice day. 

God Bless America.



  1. I received a newsletter from Chris Carney yesterday explaining loans available to farmers in northeastern PA because of the DROUGHT conditions. How come SRBC doesn't know it, but the feds do?

  2. Molly:

    Since the SRBC gets paid for water withdrawals...you know the answer. They are getting fatter and happier with every rubber-stamped approval they grant.

    They should be shut down by whatever means necessary.

    Thanks for your comment.


  3. Barb from Harveys LakeSeptember 11, 2010 at 12:03 PM

    Don - Just wanted to say Thank You for all of the information that you have made available to all of us! Without people like yourself, we would still be in the dark about what is happening to our precious water sources. This is a very sad time for Northeastern PA -I just wish there was more that we could do to stop this insanity.Please keep up the good work ! We need you!

  4. Barb:

    Thanks for your comments. There is more we all can do...will post my thoughts in the next day or so.