Too many questions about fracking unanswered

From the Press and Sun Bulletin 10/09/2012, Page A10
 GUEST VIEWPOINT
Too many questions about fracking unanswered

By Carol Egan
I have been a resident in the Town of Maine for 56 years and a landowner for 35 of those years. I am greatly interested in hydrofracking and I want to know:
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Why did the Town of Maine board resolve to accept the Department of Environmental Conservation’s guidelines after an executive meeting in an empty town hall after all the town residents had left?
» Why can’t citizens vote on the hydrofracking issue? Each citizen deserves a voice.
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 Why can gas companies lease and frack on land that is zoned agricultural and residential, not commercial and industrial?
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 Why is it that the Town of Maine board does not consider what would happen if the majority of our 5,000 residents decide to sell and move because of the drastic change of our quality of life and rural scenery? Will the short-term “winnings” of a few residents cover the broad tax base of many?
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 Why is it that we already experienced great flooding in 2006 and 2008, yet we are considering removing huge amounts of natural forestation for flat drill pads? How does this affect runoff, and what happens to the fracking chemicals during flooding?
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 Why is it that hydrofracking is “an economic opportunity” for five counties in New York but not good for the Finger Lake and watershed areas? If it’s safe for one county, it should be safe for the entire state.
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 Last year during the flood and again recently, there have been two oil spills in the Town of Maine as recorded by the DEC. Yet neither spill was cleaned nor were the parties involved fined. How can we trust the DEC to oversee all the hydrofracking in New York?
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 Why is it that gas leasers don’t accept the “hard lesson” from the “force majeure” leasers who are still wrangling in court to be released from their expired leases?
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 Why do all the leasers talk about the “economic benefit” but no one comes forward to guarantee my house value or my drinking water after hydrofracking begins?
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Why is it that no one talks about the disintegration of drill casings over 25 to 50 years and beyond?
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 Why is it that we are not told that U.S. gas companies are owned in part by the foreign countries of China, Norway and Japan and that our U.S. ports are being retrofitted to export the gas to the highest bidders? Why is it that Norway does not permit hydrofracking in its own country?
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 Why is that the majority of landowners and residents of the New York do not want hydrofracking, yet the minority tries to silence us?
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Why is it that when you ask all of these questions, it all trickles down to the almighty dollar not the good of the majority of New York residents? Egan is a Town of Maine resident.
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