When candidates say drilling is bringing jobs to Pennsylvania… Remember, the facts say jobs claims have been

wildly over-estimated and misrepresented. And in some parts of the state, drilling-related jobs are on the decline  The Chamber of Commerce stated that shale gas production “created over 300,000 new jobs in the last two years,” while the most recent Department of Labor and Industry data at the time indicated that, between the 4th quarter of 2008 and 4th quarter 2011, the industry created a total of 18,007 jobs in “core” Marcellus industries, with an additional 5,611 jobs added in “ancillary” industries. Employment estimates have been overstated, and the industry and its boosters have used inappropriate employment numbers, including equating new hires with new jobs and using ancillary job figures that largely have nothing to do with drilling, even after the flaws in those numbers have been brought to their attention. Employment gains in some counties have already been reversed as drilling activity, which is highly sensitive to commodity prices, shifted to more lucrative oil shale fields in Ohio and North Dakota. In fact, shale-related employment across the six-state Marcellus/Utica region fell over the past 12 months for which data exist, from the 1st quarter of 2012 to the 1st quarter of 2013. http://bit.ly/1azMLMJ Pennsylvania has been through the energy boom and bust cycle before and have concerns about how this generation of dirty energy production will impact other important areas of Pennsylvania’s economy, like agriculture and tourism.

When candidates say drilling is good for Pennsylvania’s economy… Remember, the facts say costs for well plugging, healthcare, infrastructure maintenance, law enforcement, criminal justice, EMS services have increased as a result of drilling.  The DEP estimated NOx and VOC emissions from shale production in 2011 at 19,300 tons per year. That translates into health costs of nearly $32,000,000 per annum. Again, none of the costs are covered by the industry that perpetrated it. http://energypolicyforum.org/2013/04/03/shale -externalities-health-impact-costs/ In 2010, PennDOT estimated road damage from drilling to $265M. State Police Commissioner Pawlowski attributed much of the road damage to overweight trucks serving the gas industry. He cited an enforcement effort in Susquehanna County that found 56 percent of 194 trucks checked were found to be over the weight limit. Fifty percent of those trucks were also cited for safety violations. http://prn.to/1f0XhfI Commissioner Pawlowski reported more arrests and incidents involving drugs, assaults and illegal weapons. "More and more, it seems the police reports coming out of the northern tier include arrests because of drug use and trafficking, fights involving rig workers, DUIs, and weapons being brought into the state and not registered properly," said the commissioner. "We've even encountered situations where drilling company employees who have been convicted of a sexual assault in another state come here to work and do not register with our Megan's Law website. Each of these issues is unacceptable and places an even greater burden on our law enforcement and local social programs meant to help those in need." http://prn.to/1f0XhfI

When candidates say drilling is safe… Remember, the facts say drilling is contaminating our water, polluting our air, destroying our woodlands, and threatening fragile ecosystems that rely on them.  According to DEP records, at least 161 private water wells were contaminated by drilling operations between 2008 and 2012. http://bit.ly/188l7qZ Frack waste trucks set off radiation alarms at landfills over 1,000 times in 2012. The average radium content in Marcellus shale wastewater samples was more than double the content found in wastewater from other gas-producing formations, according to the USGS, and 40 times the federal limit for industrial discharges. http://bit.ly/1ag1vmk Bromides have shown up in rivers and creeks in Western Pennsylvania at levels that exceed federal safe drinking water standards. When these salts combine with chlorine in water treatment facilities, they form trihalomethanes, volatile organic liquid compounds linked to several cancers and birth defects. http://bit.ly/1fKLNSe Every stage of natural gas production and delivery causes air pollution, in some cases at levels that violate air quality standards. Nitrous Oxide (NOx), Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs), and methane are regularly released into the air. NOx and VOCs can form ground-level ozone. http://bit.ly/1mnyV4X Thousands of acres of Pennsylvania’s forests are being destroyed by drilling operations. According to the U. S. Geological Survey, the impacts on ecosystems is greater than those caused by logging and agriculture. http://www.naturalgaswatch.org/?p=1565

When candidates say Pennsylvanians are benefitting from fracking… Remember, the facts say drilling has profoundly negatively impacted many Pennsylvanians’ lives  Duke University researchers found that properties in Washington County, PA with private water wells that are within 1.25 miles of drilling lost 24%, for lease holders the net loss is only 13%. http://bit.ly/1kLgAR7 Nationwide Insurance announced in 2013 that it would not provide coverage to damage due to fracking. http://buswk.co/19DGFN0 Federal lending and mortgage institutions (FHA, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac) all have prohibitions against lending on properties where drilling is taking place or where hazardous materials are stored. A drilling lease on a property financed through one of these agencies would result in a ”technical default.” FHA’s guidelines also don’t allow it to finance mortgages where homes are within 300 feet of an active or planned drilling site. http://bit.ly/1kLgAR7 State laws do not limit the hours drilling operations can go on, so they regularly go on 24/7, creating noise and light pollution problems that can affect sleep and increase the risk of heart disease. http://bit.ly/1e2HgUw Fracking has divided communities like Dimock, Pennsylvania as friends and neighbors find themselves on opposite sides of the drilling debate. http://n.pr/1e2IvTE

When candidates tell you fracking is wellregulated… Remember, the facts say that the industry is poorly regulated, that the regulations we have are not uniformly enforced, and that even the best regulation won’t make fracking safe.  In 2010, inspectors were unable to monitor 91% of the Pennsylvania’s active wells. The DEP’s Air Quality bureau does not perform routine inspections of oil and gas sites. In 2011, 4.069 violations were found during inspections. Many of the companies involved are repeat offenders. Although Pennsylvania took the most enforcement actions in 2010, the percentage of violations resulting in enforcement action is decreasing in that state as the gas industry expands. In 2008, enforcement action was taken on more than half of the oil and gas violations in Pennsylvania, but by 2011 action was taken on less than a quarter of violations. In Pennsylvania, decisions on drilling permit applications have been made after reviews that take only 35 minutes. http://bit.ly/1ageTXA Consumptive water use during production, methane leak rates as high as 12% at active wells, and the knowledge that all wells will deteriorate over time, further risking our water and air, tell us that fracking just isn’t worth it. Renewable energy is the only way forward.

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When candidates say…
The facts on fracking you may not hear on the campaign trail

January 2014
For more information on the Moratorium NOW campaign, visit www.gastruth.org