Yesterday, the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee held a hearing on the environmental and health effects of natural gas drilling. As with most hearings on Capitol Hill, each side had it’s own view on the impacts of natural gas and how best to mitigate those impacts.
The fact that some still deny the potentially destructive impacts of this industry is still shocking to me. One only has to visit a gasland community to see the very real effects.
I was heartened by two of the statements made by Bob Perciasepe, the Deputy Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency.
First, he firmly stated that companies that use diesel fuel for hydraulic fracturing without a Safe Drinking Water Act permit are breaking the law.
Second, when asked about new data around greenhouse gas emissions from natural gas, he said that the forthcoming report by Cornell researchers is an important piece of information that we need to bring into the discussion.
With leadership from the EPA, I hope that we can move forward with the difficult task of bringing the natural gas industry to a place where water, air and public health are the first priority.