Try digitalPLUS for 10 days for only $0.99

Readers Respond

News Opinion Readers Respond

Fracking's risks greatly overstated

In a recent letter to the editor ("Fracking is not the answer for U.S. economy," May 7), David Wagenheim relies on outdated and previously debunked talking points in an attempt to convince readers that hydraulic fracturing harms groundwater, notwithstanding statements from organizations like the U.S. Department of Energy and the Ground Water Protection Council to the contrary. Even the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency itself stood up this past year and tried to set the record straight on this claim, with former administrator Lisa Jackson telling reporters that "in no case" — not one — has the agency found hydraulic fracturing to have an adverse impact on drinking water.

Bizarrely, the author then attempts to suggest that the hundreds of thousands of jobs that have been created as a result of new shale development are essentially a mirage. That would certainly be news to states like Pennsylvania, Ohio and especially North Dakota, which today boasts the lowest unemployment rate of any state in the country. Last year, nearly one out of every nine new jobs created in the entire United States came from the oil and gas sector — even though the industry only operates in about half the states. Whether Maryland decides to move forward with responsible development in its western counties will ultimately be for the state to decide. But can we at least insist that that decision be made on the basis of good, actual, demonstrable facts?

Shannon Brushe, Catonsville

  • Text NEWS to 70701 to get Baltimore Sun local news text alerts
  • Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
    Related Content
    • On fracking, O'Malley betrays his supposed principles

      On fracking, O'Malley betrays his supposed principles

      Wenonah Hauter's Dec. 3 op-ed, "There is no safe fracking, Mr. O'Malley," was exactly the kind of criticism that the O'Malley administration, and their self-proclaimed commitment to "protecting our environment" deserves. Opening Maryland to fracking undermines any goal the O'Malley administration...

    • The frackers are coming, the frackers are coming!

      The frackers are coming, the frackers are coming!

      History, myth, and legend informs those of us in the United States that on a chilly night in 1775 a relative of mine mounted his horse, and as loudly as he could, rode through the streets of Boston proclaiming that an invading fleet was entering the harbor aiming to muzzle and arrest any acts of...

    • Fracking will boost Maryland's economy

      Fracking will boost Maryland's economy

      Wenonah Hauter's recent op-ed on the dangers of fracking in Maryland missed the mark completely ("There is no safe fracking, Mr. O'Malley," Dec. 3).

    • Garrett benefits from vacationers

      Garrett benefits from vacationers

      A recent article by reporter Tim Wheeler about the issue of natural gas development in Garrett County contains a statement from a local Chamber of Commerce board member and farmer who has been a fairly vocal advocate for natural gas development ("Fracking debate intensifies in Western Maryland,"...

    • Sierra Club opposes fracking plan

      Sierra Club opposes fracking plan

      A recent article reported that the Sierra Club "praised the administration's conclusions" regarding opening the state to fracking ("O'Malley administration sets out path to fracking in Md.," Nov. 25).

    • Western Md. faces fracking threat

      Western Md. faces fracking threat

      The recent article about fracking in Western Maryland seemed to me to raise more arguments for not drilling for natural gas in Garrett County than for it ("Fracking debate intensifies in Western Maryland, those benefits would be relatively short-term since "Western Maryland's gas reserves are limited."

    • Fracking in W. Maryland is not a done deal

      Fracking in W. Maryland is not a done deal

      I am sending this letter out as a mother, as a small farmer, as a Garrett County property owner and tax payer, and as a member of a community that I care deeply about.

    • Thank God Hogan wasn't in charge of the fracking report

      Thank God Hogan wasn't in charge of the fracking report

      Maryland's recent report on fracking safely is an example of smart governing ("O'Malley administration sets out path to fracking in Md.," Nov. 25). In July 2011, Gov. Martin O'Malley ordered a commission to be formed by the Maryland Department of the Environment and the Department of Natural Resources....

    Comments
    Loading

    66°