Tuesday, August 23, 2011
100,000 holes: Playing with Fire
Tripped across this letter yesterday:
I read the headline “Water at risk from drilling” in the Aug. 14 CDT while visiting my son, who is a grad student at Penn State.
“If you play with fire,” my wise old dad used to say, “you’re going to get burned.”
We kids used to play with matches in the basement of our grand old house. My common-sense father feared we’d burn the house down and the family would have no place to live.
Pennsylvanians don’t think of the Marcellus Shale play as “fire,” but that’s the way it feels to me. It’s a big gamble. We are risking our God-given productive agricultural heritage and the natural beauty of our landscapes, which support vast varieties of wildlife and which contribute billions of tourist dollars every year, for a few short-lived “gas dollars.”
All life, including human life, requires a dependable source of good, clean water. There are many indications already that we are jeopardizing our water supply — not only for ourselves, our children and our grandchildren but for all the magnificent life forms that thrive in Pennsylvania.
You can’t punch 100,000 holes in the surface of our Pennsylvania landscape, fill them with toxic chemicals, let them percolate for 100 years, leaching gas out of our shale and then assume that our water will remain pure. It doesn’t make sense.
Wake up, Pennsylvania.
William Thwing Johnstown
Thanks, William. 'Nuff said for today.