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View Diary: Can a community defy a cabal of multi-national corporations? (28 comments)

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  •  grassroots is where it's at (4+ / 0-)
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    James Wells, Neon Mama, sb, northsylvania

    I just read about a county here in VA that rejected a proposal by a big gas company to start fracking.

    Rockingham rejects Marcellus Shale

    Rockingham County's opposition to Carrizo was led by one man, Pablo Cuevas, a Republican supervisor whose district covers Bergton. The county already has about 20 gas wells, so residents are familiar with drilling operations. But Cuevas was alarmed by reports of chemical water contamination from hydraulic fracturing for natural gas in New York, West Virginia and Pennsylvania.
    And if chemicals used by Carrizo somehow contaminated the groundwater that area farmers rely on, the law only required the company to put aside $25,000 to cover the damage, Cuevas said.

    In meetings, he peppered company representatives with questions and demanded far more money than the company was willing to pay to cover the cost of potential mishaps.

    At first, landowners who granted leases to Carrizo in return for rent payments and royalties were upset with Cuevas. But after public hearings in which environmentalists and landowners in other states testified, their opinions slowly changed.

    Sometimes betting on a town is good; sometimes not, said Richard Hunter, vice president of investor relations for Carrizo, a Houston-based company that exploits gas in four types of shale nationwide using controversial drilling techniques that go deep and horizontal.

    He called the time and money spent in pursuit of a permit "almost a fishing expedition." Carrizo abandoned its proposal in December. "We tested the waters, and they're not warm," Hunter said.

    A fishing expedition indeed. We need to make sure we don't take the bait.

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