Lawmakers, Environmentalists: No Studies, No Fracking | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

Lawmakers, Environmentalists: No Studies, No Fracking

Play associated audio

Environmental groups and area lawmakers are renewing their push to prevent fracking in the state of Maryland until further studies can be done.

Fracking, which is not currently done in Maryland, involves injecting a mixture of water and chemicals thousands of feet underground to open up horizontal seams in the bedrock that let natural gas out and up a well.

The prospect has at least been discussed, as there is believed to be natural gas reserves in the Marcellus Shale in the western part of the state. Before discussions go any further, however, Maryland Del. Heather Mizeur wants to know the risks.

"We're gonna be sending a message that no studies in Maryland means no fracking in Maryland," says Mizeur.

The Delegate, along with State Senators Jamie Raskin and Brian Frosh, propose a moratorium on the practice until a number of health and environmental studies are complete.  They also want the industry to pay for those studies.

"There are thousands of cases of well contamination that have been documented near fracking sites in Colorado, New Mexico, Alabama, Ohio and Pennsylvania," says Frosh.

That is disputed by America's Natural Gas Alliance, which argues that no cases of groundwater contamination have been linked to fracking. It is true, however, that surface spills of fracking liquid have contaminated wells. In a written statement, America's Natural Gas Alliance argues that "natural gas can be and is safely and responsibly produced in communities across the country."

The lawmakers' announcement that they want to head off potential fracking comes as a host of environmental groups have filed a legal petition with the EPA to ask for regulatory action on fracking chemicals. Currently, mining companies in most states aren't required to report what their fracking fluid contains.

NPR

'American Crime' And 'The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt' Highlight The TV Revolution

Tina Fey co-created the quirky comedy The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt for Netflix; John Ridley made the emotionally raw drama American Crime for ABC. TV critic David Bianculli says they're both good.
NPR

Dump The Lumps: The World Health Organization Says Eat Less Sugar

WHO says there's strong evidence that excessive sugar is bad for us. So it's recommending that we cut back significantly.
NPR

Justices Roberts And Kennedy The Key Votes In Health Law Case

No telling yet which side will win. But did Justice Kennedy's mixed signals Wednesday hint that he was leaning toward the administration's view of federal subsidies for health insurance?
WAMU 88.5

Transportation App Bridj Has Bus-Sized Ambitions For D.C.

It works similar to other ride-sharing apps, in that you establish a location and destination, and order a ride. But you'll be shown where to catch a Bridj bus, instead of getting a vehicle at your door.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.