345 Park St.
Montrose, PA 18801
Thank you for having
this meeting. I am here specifically to ask the EPA to hold a
Susquehanna River Basin Forum for stakeholder’s to assess and
address threats to our drinking water. But I am also here to ask you
to address all of the impacts to our community.
We are in the very beginning of intensive gas industry development in my County. As it stands now, impact studies are patchy, short term and inadequate. They lack crucial peer reviewed authenticity. Studies about the effects to our air, our health and our long-term economics; farming, tourism, and natural resource conservation need to be comprehensive and address cumulative effects. Current studies must not be mere snapshots, which are then widely touted as definitive hard data. In this way the real story of what is happening is lost. In addition we are admittedly being used by the gas industry as an experiment and as a learning ground. This is a matter of social injustice. If it were any other industry or business the actions of the gas companies in my region would be unacceptable. I do not believe development would have proceeded at this rapid pace in an urban area. In fact when I contacted the DEP Office of Environmental Justice I was informed that my County was not eligible for their services because our population base was too low.
Office of Environmental Justice, http://tinyurl.com/7957g6e
I would like to know if the EPA is going to step in if the PADEP does not protect the citizens of our State?
In the interest of time I have included a copy of this testimony and a copy of my correspondence with the Terry Maenza, Director of the PA. American Water CO. about the lack of ability to protect my town’s municipal water supply. I have also included a copy of a document entitled, “Local Experiences Related to the Marcellus Shale Industry” by Stacy Covey, the President of the Troy Community Hospital in Sayre, PA.
Thank you for you time and consideration.
345 Park St.
Montrose, PA 18801
346 Park St.
Montrose, PA 18801
To the EPA Representatives;
Thank you for holding a meeting with residents of NEPA and hearing our concerns, we may be small and rural but we are experiencing large and overwhelming problems. My concerns about the gas industry in my community are as follows:
I am concerned about the lack of peer reviewed environmental studies in the shale gas regions and the lack of reliable health data.
I am concerned about the lack of requirements for the industry to notify those in the community who are not leased about gas industry related activity that is going to commence near our homes. We have no say over impacts to our homes, our health or our quality of life. The gas industry has admitted to us in various public forums that they are working in untested geologic conditions in the Marcellus and in northeastern PA and that they are learning as they go. In my opinion we are being used as lab rats.
I am concerned about my municipal source of drinking water. Terry M. Maenza, Director, Communications & External Affairs, Pennsylvania American Water told me that they are not notified if drilling is going to occur near Lake Montrose, the source of my drinking water. If methane starts bubbling up in Lake Montrose or there is a gas industry related accident or spills that contaminates the water supply how will the water contamination be re-mediated in a municipal water supply situation?
I am also concerned about the increasing number of intrastate and interstate pipelines and the lack of pipeline oversight in rural areas.
Monday, December 6, 2010 4:44 PM
Thank you for your inquiry. At the present time, PA American Water and other water providers have no knowledge or input on lease agreements, because neither the gas company nor landowner is required to notify the nearby water supplier about potential sites for drilling. What's more, current laws and regulations do not provide for water suppliers to be alerted or have the opportunity to give input during the review of drilling permits for property in close proximity to our sources. We'd like to see regulations and/or legislation that specifically notifies and enables water suppliers to express comments and concerns -- during the permit's review -- about the potential impact on our sources. In most cases, we now hear about permits and drilling locations only after they've been approved.
That's why we keep in close communication with DEP personnel to understand where drilling might occur in our watershed. We have been talking with Reps. Mundy and Boback and Sen. Baker to express our concerns and share our experience. I'm attaching a link to Rep. Boback's proposal on these issues, as a result of our conversations. (http://www.repboback.com/NewsItem.aspx?NewsID=9128)
Terry M. Maenza
Director, Communications & External Affairs
Pennsylvania American Water
610-670-7789 ext. 123 (office)
Twitter: Follow us at twitter.com/paamwater