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SUBMITTED by Nancy Kasper, Huron (2-Oct-2012)

Letter to the Editor

Praise to the Town of Huron Supervisor and Councilpersons who moved unanimously to draft a moratorium on the controversial natural gas extraction process called horizontal, high volume hydrofracking, a method utilizing high-pressure injection underground of millions of gallons per well of fresh water mixed with chemicals, many of them known carcinogens and endocrine disruptors, to loosen or dissolve obstructions in the Marcellus shale underlying much of the state. The local moratorium will prohibit drilling in our area and protect our vital water resources from possible contamination by the millions of gallons of toxic fluids that don't resurface and simply disappear somewhere undergound. Where does it go, you might ask? Good question the industry can't answer though they insist hydrofracking is safe, but common sense and contaminated wells and streams could answer. The growing body of evidence showing harmful effects on human, animal and environmental health has given pause to the fracking approval process, but industry pressure is heavy on decision-makers and the money and influence is flowing with it.

What was claimed as a panacea to our flagging economy, with promise of wealth from green energy, has shown over time to be far more complex and less profitable given the cost of contaminated water and air water and degraded quality of life.

Natural gas itself is cleaner than oil or coal, but the extraction method renders it dirtier than either. The industry line of it being a "bridge fuel" to wean us off oil is also untrue because they intend to sell it overseas for 2-3 times the going domestic rate, leaving the Americans bearing the health and environmental costs while denying the benefit of "clean gas".

Over 120 municipalities state-wide have taken similar protective measures, and hopefully Huron will lead the rest of Wayne County into similar action.

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