Rivertown Coalition for Clean Air and Clean Water

Winter 2014

Rivertown Coalition
Follow the water
Volume 3 Issue 1 Coming events
Feb 1 6pm Shale Justice First Anniversary Party and open mic night Bloomsburg Moose Hall Feb 8. 2pm. Triple Divide Movie at Campus Theatre in Lewisburg . Don’t miss this one. Sponsored by Shale Justice February 21-22 Pennsylvania Community Rights Workshop at SU. Sponsored by Shale Justice and CELDF April 5 Follow the Water Workshop from 9am to 3pm at St. Paul’s UCC Church in Selinsgrove

Save the Date!!! April 5, 2014 For Annual Spring Wor kshop We will “Follow the Water” With Three Morning S peakers who will:
• Follow the history of the Susquehanna River • Follow the changes in this River in one lifetime • Follow the water through the phases of the gas drilling process. Lunch will be followed by a demonstration of How to make a rain barrel for your home. Come for all or part of the day. $10 fee includes lunch.

Who Decides What Happens In Your Community, And How Did It Get That Way? This workshop will look at PA’s political and legal structures and how the PA constitution has evolved since the American Revolution so that corporations have more rights than citizens and what it would take to change that. Members of the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund will present in depth info on Feb 21 and 22 at SU. Info and registration call Laidacker’s at 570-713-8843 or email slaidacker@hotmail.com

Don’t Miss this movie

Triple Divide

The title of the film Triple Divide reflects one of PA's special places where rainwater from this area can fall to three sides of the North American continent: down the Susquehanna, Allelgheny and Genessee Rivers to different corners of our land. The co-creators of Triple Divide are Melissa Troutman and Joshua Probanic who are investigative journalists who have dedicated their lives to covering the Marcellus Shale beat in Potter County, PA for several years. They share their findings through personal stories, interviews with experts and public documents. This is an opportunity to consider gas drilling information that does not come from a paid TV ad. Q &A afte rward s wi th th e cre ators of th e fi lm . It w ill b e sho wn at th e Ca mpu s Th eatre i n Le wi sbu rg o n Saturd ay Fe bru ary 8 th at 2pm.


Rivertown Coaliton for Clean Air and Clean Water OH SUSQUEHAN NA – Sooth My Soul
B y Jim Cha rles Isl e of Que Riv er Ra t

Winter 2014 Vol.3 Issue 1

Awesome, magnificent, beautiful, spectacular, inspiring, gentle, powerful, mighty, historic, ancient, soul soothing – threatening, destructive, raging, powerful, all these words both good and bad bring pure joy to the heart of this Isle of Que born River Rat. Four generations of River Rats have preceded me and two more generations are staged to follow with my two sons and grandchildren. As I reflect back on my generations use and care of this river I so dearly love, I’ m troubled by the thought of what words will my grandchildren use to describe their Susquehanna River. Will it be the above captioned words or will it be words like impaired, troubled, threatened, or toxic that describe the quality of the river we have left for them and their children. I feel very strongly that the contribution our generation of senior River Rats can leave for future generations is a Comprehensive Scientific Low Flow Baseline Study of the main stem of the Susquehanna River. This study would identify what chemical contaminants presently exist in the river and establish a baseline from which future generations can determine if the quality of the river is improving or declining. Since there has never been a comprehensive baseline study established

for the river, we truly don’t know what contaminants are presently in the river or if the river is better or worse than when our father’s generation handed it over to us. Without a baseline established for the river, the public will have a very difficult time ever trying to prove any future industry contaminated the river; as that industry will claim that the contamination existed prior to their time period. Without a baseline study science will have a difficult time proving otherwise. As technology develops new chemical compounds for use in the Agriculture, Oil & Gas and Pharmaceutical Industries future generations will face an impossible task of determining each industries effect on the Susquehanna River that Continued on Page 3 a

Both of these writers grew up on the Isle of Que
“Rainbow at Que” photo by Joe Herb another Isle of Que resident

Lament Fo r A River By Shirley Rowe As I begin this article I have thought about so many things I would like to say about a natural resource that we have all too long taken for granted, the Susquehanna River. Except for a few years of my life I have always lived along this river, a beautiful river and one of the three oldest rivers on our planet. If you have never spent any time observing its beauty, or on it and could have, you have missed a part of what makes the Susquehanna Valley and river unique from other areas. Someone once asked me if I could live anywhere else other than this area. I answered “Yes” because there are so many 2

beautiful places to live. However, I have been fortunate to call the Susquehanna Valley my home and the Susquehanna River my inspiration. As a child it was just the river and later in life I realized how lucky I was to have access everyday to something most people dream about- living along a beautiful river. It was my river to enjoy in any way I fancied. What pleasures and wonderful memories I have. Many years have passed since I spent my first summers having fun boating, swimming,
Co n tin ue d on P age 3

Rivertown Coalition for Clean Air and Clean Water Continued from Page 2 Jim Charles
we leave for their use. The best gift our generation can leave for our grandchildren is a scientific starting point from which they can measure the quality of their Susquehanna River. The worst gift we can leave for them is a “We don’t know what’s in the river” heritage from which they will face the same unknowns we face today. This road will go on forever, how far down it will we choose to kick the can? Continued from Page 2 Sh irle y Ro we Expl o ri ng th e islan d s, p icn ickin g or ju st wal ki ng alo n g th e path s be si de th e ri ve r. I t is a sparkl in g j ewe l wh en th e sun s hin e s o n it. I co ul d men tio n all th e re aso n s the ri ve r h as ch ang e d si nc e my you th fro m my firs t wad e in th e ri ve r to the p rese n t. Th e riv er is su ffe rin g a slo w de ath. We take for g rante d it w ill be ab le to wash awa y all the ab use an d po ll utan ts th at are du mp ed in i t. Li ke any l iv in g th in g , the riv er is o u r li fe li ne , we mu st b e v ig ilan t i n ho w we care fo r it o r we w ill su ffe r gre atly. Futu re ge n erati on s w ill n ot kn o w th e rive r as it o n ce was and as I kne w it. For th is I l ame nt.

Winter 2014 Vol. 3 Issue 1

Before washing out to sea, this house was the last remaining structure on the sunken island town of Holland Island, Maryland. Accumulating scientific evidence suggests that the East Coast “will be a global hot spot for a rising sea level over the coming century,” notes New York Times reporter Justin Gillis. http://wwwcommondreams.org headline/ 2014/01/14-8

CLIMATE CHANGE/RENEWABLE ENERGY Still have questions about fossil fuels, renewable energy and global climate change? How do you feel about fewer toxic chemical spills into our waterways? Reduced air emissions contributing to cancers and asthma? No more Deep Water Horizon type ocean oil spills/leaks contaminating ecosystems upon which cultures depend for food and tourism dollars? Saving the money our government spends on mega droughts, wildfires and floods? No more placing our armed forces in harm's way to secure oil for our insatiable appetite for fossil energy? These things could happen if we concentrate on developing renewable energy. Of all the harms caused by the emitted chemicals from burning fossil fuels, the most egregious may be the effect on fetal brain development. OnEarth, the National Rersources Defense Council magazine reports on a study of "201 heavy metals, solvents, pesticides, and endocrine disrupters KNOWN to have toxic effects in the human brain." The article further reports that, "a 5 point drop in average IQ points in the US translates into 2.4 million gifted kids, instead of 6 million, and 9.4 million mentally retarded children instead of 6 million" and "The decreased IQ from only the effects of mercury (one of the 201 toxics) could result in a 3

In June Weis Markets received The Silver award in the 25th DuPont Awards for Packaging Innovation, an international award, for their closed-loop 100 percent recyclable modified atmosphere packaging (MAP) meat trays. The trays were developed in partnership with Clearly Clean Products and are made from 80 percent recycled #1 plastic. They are easily recycled by customers after use. The patented, Peel-A-Tray packaging will eventually replace more than 11 tons of polypropylene #5 trays on which the company's fresh meat products were previously wrapped. Weis is making it part of their mission to become a more environmentally friendly and sustainable company. To learn more about Weis Markets' recycled meat tray and other sustainability initiatives, visit WeisMarkets.com. To learn more about the Peel-A-Tray technology, visit ClearlyClean.com.


Rivertown Coaliton for Clean Air and Clean Water

Winter 2014 Vol.3 Issue 1

decreased economic productivity of $8.7 billion annually." There's a better way and it's here now and it's affordable. (Especially when the health, environmental and infrastructure costs are included in burning fossil fuels.) Kiley Krohn and Jeff Spross report on 13 major clean energy breakthroughs of 2013. These range from "salt batteries" to offshore floating wind turbines. For all of the good news go to: http://grist.org/climate-energy/13-major-clean-energy-breakthroughs-of-2013 Two samples: the "salt battery" is being used in a Solana solar plant in Arizona. Using the batteries along with mirrors to concentrate heat for steam to run turbines, electricity can be extended for 6 hours after sunset. Solana expects to produce enough energy to supply 185,000 customers. Statoil is a Norwegian company constructing 5 floating wind turbines off the coast of Scotland to generate 30 megawatts of electricity. The turbines will be located 8-12 miles off the coast in water up to 700 meters deep. Conventional offshore wind turbines must be placed in water of depths of 60 meters or less. You may not be able to purchase "salt batteries" or floating wind turbines but there are 2 things you can do. 1. Conserve wherever possible and 2. Pressure all your elected officials to pursue clean energy policies. In the news: ! Four States confirm that oil and gas drilling pollutes water. PA confirms at least 106 well contamination cases. http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2014/01/05/22190011-oil-and-gas-drillingpollutes-well-water-states-confirm?lite&gt1=43001

!Some 200,00 miles of gathering lines go completely unregulated.
http://inthesetimes.com/article/16020/top_pipeline_regulator_says_lack_of_oversight_keeps_her_up_at_night/ !Gas Drilling is killing property Values for Some Americans. http://www.businessinsider.com/drilling-can-makesome-properties-unsellable-2013-12#ixzz2nHjzAZTs

!Natural Gas Property Liens on personal property prevent refinancing.
http://gomarcellusshale.com/forum/topics/lein-on-property?xg_source=msg_mes_network !Oil leak on massive pipeline pushing tar sand through the Great Lakes http://surfgreatlakes.wordpress.com/ !Key gas drilling health study collecting PA data. Dec 31, 2013 Pocono Record. Geisinger Health Systems is

beginning a data warehouse to be made available to researchers to collect data on possible health risks of gas activities that are affecting health. !Transparency in gas royalty reporting is needed to sort out the complexities of gas payments.
magissues.far mp rogress.com/AMA/AM10Oct13/ama011.pdf





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