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Drilling for natural gas will soon be coming to Western Maryland, splitting camps into those who think it is no different than other industries and others with environmental concerns. (Kenneth K. Lam/Baltimore Sun video)

I agree with Dr. Dan Morhaim's analysis that fracking rules are inadequate to protect water quality, health and the environment ("Maryland delegate: fracking regulations 'wholly inadequate,'" Jan. 12). The facts speak loudly that this is the case, as seen in neighboring Pennsylvania where fracking has been in progress for years. The reports from the other six states in the Midwest and West are the same. Maryland stands to lose more economically than can ever be gained if fracking proceeds.

We are a small state, and the Chesapeake Bay is shallow. These two geographic facts alone support the notion that fracking cannot safely be done as any breach, spill or quake in the earth will take generations to overcome. Whatever fines or guarantees made by the gas and oil industry, we know from previous "accidents" that recovery is long and arduous, the environment possibly never the same.

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An extended moratorium is the least action to be done. Preferably, a permanent ban is essential to protect Maryland from the probable devastation of fracking.

Pat Ranney, Millersville

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