Pennsylvania's fractured gas attitude.
By Kay Wood
"Gov. Wolf hails shale ethane exports"
"$4.24M awarded in Dimock tainted-water case"
These two headlines in the same philly.com edition on the same day illustrate Pennsylvania's fractured gas attitude.
Since 1859 when the first successful oil well was drilled near Titusville, Pennsylvania, fossil fuels have been a very useful and toxic form of energy that’s been providing us with wonderful amounts of energy, and poisoning us as we use it. The more energy we get, the more we and our environment are poisoned.
Big oil has more often than not foisted the clean up and health care costs off on the general public. This business model our legislators have allowed, has let some people make obscene amounts of money off oil and gas. Some of them want to make a lot more before the climate change which oil causes wipes us all out. The logic of that escapes me, but there it is.
Philadelphia owns PGW and makes money from it. Philly is also a city desperately in need of revenue. That could be why our city leaders are even considering increasing fossil fuel processing here. This is with something misleadingly labeled an “energy” hub by gas promoters. It’s a plan to increase the processing and transshipment of fracked gas in Philly.
The gas industry is the same industry that by the time of the first Earth Day had gotten Philadelphia labeled "Filthadelphia.” It’s the same industry whose leavings we've spent the last 40 some years and enormous resources trying to clean up. We’ve made good progress, but even after all that effort and expense, a couple years back Forbes magazine cited us as number 1 for toxicity in the country, and the Clean Air Council says we’ve got the third worst air.
Here's one way to heal our fractured future. Why not invest in clean energy?
Kay Wood is the producer/host of Planet Philadelphia environmental radio show on Gtown Radio. The website is planetphila.com. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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