Tuesday, June 24, 2014

State Lands: Drivers of the PA Economy

Governor Corbett issued an executive order reopening our state forests to leasing for natural gas drilling to fill in a one-time budget gap.
  • All of the un-leased forest land is in ecologically sensitive areas. Incidents, including spills of diesel fuel and brine, have occurred in state forests.i
  • Nearly 1,500 acres of forest had been converted for well pads and infrastructure, including some areas of once-contiguous forest that have been fragmented by new development.i
  • Pipeline crossings impacted Exceptional Value, High Quality, or Cold Water Fisheries designated streams at 35 different locations.i
  • New development makes areas vulnerable to the spread of invasive species. Researchers found 11 invasive plant species at 14 of the 18 well pads they looked at. i
  • There are fewer opportunities for remote recreational experiences in forests with gas development and three designated state forest hiking trails have been affected by gas development.[i]

The Governor believes his proposal will not result in any additional disturbances. 

There is no such thing as a non-surface impact gas lease.

Proximity of drilling activities to our forests and parks alone puts them at risk. Pollution respects no boundaries. Additional drilling will result in noise and light disturbance from heavy machinery, seismic exploration, construction of new roads and pipelines, and increased truck traffic. 

These potential dangers and activities increase the risk of:
  • Threatening the health of nearby families who have few safeguards to protect them from accidents and leaks.
  • Upsetting the natural habitat of animals
  • Proliferating invasive species
  • Increasing forest fragmentation
  • Disrupting the peace that is associated with enjoying nature
    • When the parks can no longer be enjoyed, people go elsewhere to experience the outdoors and take their tourism money with them


Oppose Governor Corbett’s order reopening our state forests natural gas leasing and exposing state parks to unconventional leasing for the first time.

Call or write to your Senator or Representative.
Not sure who they are or how to reach them? Click here. 

Ask your legislators to:
Ø  Vote against any budget that includes leasing our state forests and parks to raise money
Ø  Tell their leadership that they plan to vote against any budget that includes leasing state parks and forests

For more information on natural gas drilling, visit: sierraclub.org/naturalgas or call 717.232.0101 

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