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Public Comment Philadelphia City Council Jan 27, 2011 from Poune Saberi; Family Physician

January 27, 2011

Resolution number 100864

1/27 City Council Hearing

Marcellus Shale Gas Drilling’s Impact on Philadelphia

My name is Poune Saberi, I am a family physician at the University of Pennsylvania. I have lived in center city Philadelphia and been a tax payer for more than ten years. I am here to support resolution 100864, that addresses the impact of Marcellus Shale hydrolic fracturing on Philadelphia. At the December 16th hearing I testified about the public health impact of natural gas drilling. I spoke about studies that found a 40 fold increased risk of cancer after only 7 days, when exposed to the same chemicals that have contaminated the drinking water of two families in Pennsylvania from shale gas drilling. In another study EPA tested the private well waters of residents who live around pipelines from drilling sites in Wyoming and they tested positive for Bisphenol-A among other contaminants. As I am sure you are aware, Bisphenol-A is the same endocrine-disrupting chemical that is now banned from being used in production of infant’s milk bottles. In Texas there has been a 25 percent increase in cases of pediatric asthma in regions where children live close to well pads.

We must know much more about the impacts of shale gas drilling on human health before we invite these dangers into our own beautiful, life-filled watershed.  DRBC comment period on its premature rules should be at least two years, so that it may be informed by science and protect our health.

I strongly support the City Council in adopting the proposed resolution without any delay. I also urge you to extend the public hearing period on DRBC recommendations beyond March 16th. Philadelphians have the right to be educated and participate in what directly impacts their health.

As before I thank the City Council for being front-runners in all matters that concern the public health of their residents. I urge you to continue to stand up for Philadelphia and push for a public hearing session on DRBC recommendations in our city


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