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Press Release; Protecting Our Waters’ Message to Ed Rendell

October 26, 2010


For immediate release Contact: Austin Kelley

Tel. (c) 646-244-5634


Philadelphia Grassroots Group, Protecting Our Waters, Calls on Rendell to Protect People, Public Health, and Water Quality – Statewide and in Delaware River Basin

POW Protests Rendell’s Fast-Tracking Gas Drilling Rules in Delaware River Watershed

Protecting Our Waters, a Philadelphia grassroots group, attended Gov. Rendell’s press conference at Penn Treaty Park on October 26, 2010 to celebrate the governor’s belated action to protect state forests from further gas leasing.  “It’s a positive step for the governor to publicly acknowledge that gas drilling harms forests, water quality and habitat. We want him to extend that protection to Pennsylvanians across the state, not just in our forest lands,” stated POW Director Iris Marie Bloom.  “Marcellus Shale drilling is a public health issue. People are getting sick from water contamination, and scientific findings emerge constantly showing that this new unconventional technology is dangerous.”

Yesterday, the University of Buffalo released a study demonstrating that uranium is mobilized (released) by fracking the Marcellus Shale. Uranium is a potent carcinogen.

“All we are saying is give science a chance,” quipped Alice Wells, a POW member from West Philadelphia.  “We are glad he is finally signing this executive order. But meanwhile, he has continued to direct his representative on the Delaware River Basin Commission  to repeatedly vote in favor of gas extraction without even pausing long enough for a cumulative impact statement to be assessed here in the Delaware River Watershed.”

“We are stunned that Gov. Rendell has ignored Philadelphia City Council’s resolutions in favor of a gas drilling moratorium statewide and especially here, in the Delaware River Watershed with its ecologically sensitive, economically valuable, pristine headwaters and the downstream waters serving 15 million residents,” stated Austin Kelly, also of West Philadelphia.

Since January, POW has been calling for a statewide moratorium on gas drilling at least until the new EPA study of water and air contamination from fracking is completed.

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