In preparing for the 12/15/2011 SRBC meeting in Wilkes-Barre, I reviewed all 26 dockets on the SRBC's agenda. I also reviewed the minutes from the last 4 quarterly meetings of the SRBC, noting every water withdrawal for well completion, hydrostatic testing of pipelines, and other activities related to natural gas drilling. I had names, places, amounts, cumulative totals AND how much projected income the SRBC would realize from each site if approved.
That's correct, folks. The SRBC gets paid for approving the consumptive use of the most precious of our natural resources...WATER! How else do you think they could they be funding the construction of a brand new headquarters building in an economy like this?
Anyway, here is a verbatim extract from my prepared comments which never saw the light of day:
For today’s meeting, I reviewed the minutes of your last four quarterly meetings. As follows:
Dec 2010 Meeting –Withdrawals were approved from 3 CWF, 1 HQ-TSF, 1 Class A HQ-CWF, 1 Class C Exceptional Value CWF – all totaling in excess of 4 MGD. That amounts to over 1 billion gallons per year…from 6 of our finest streams.
March 2011 meeting - Withdrawals were approved from Coldwater Fisheries, Coldwater-Trout Stocked Fisheries, Exceptional Value waters and one Unclassified Stream. (NB: Mention Peoples Financial Services was a project sponsor – Indeed.)
June 2011 meeting – The Mother Lode! Approvals were granted for 11 CWF, 1 HQ-CWF ( Genesee Forks - also designated as a Class A Naturally Reproducing Wild Trout Stream ), 2 TSF, 1 HQ-TSF, 1 EV stream. Total: 16.126 MGD – 500MGM – 6BGY.
September 2011 – Approvals were granted for 2 CWF, 1 HQ-TSF, 1-HQ-CWF. Plus into basin diversions, ground water withdrawals ( favorite – from Meshoppen Pizza well ) and on and on. Seems like anyone and everyone who can fill out a form is getting in on the NG gravy train.
Today, you have 26 projects under consideration. Using the water portal on your website, I’ve reviewed the information that is available for each one of them. In order:
Three projects seek to withdraw water from Cold water fisheries ( #17, 23 and 24 ). I am requesting that they be denied – today – and that the project sponsors seek alternative withdrawal sites for consideration at a future quarterly meeting.
Two proposed projects (#9 & #13) are from trout stocked/migratory fisheries. I am requesting they be denied until an alternate site can be proposed.
And there was much more...
Hey...the next SRBC quarterly meeting is less than 90 days away.
Start gathering your data, folks.