CUMBERLAND — Local elected officials had the Maryland attorney general’s ear Tuesday morning and they bent it, asking for a break from stringent environmental regulations that they say are blocking economic growth in far Western Maryland.Dry fracking, huh? First time I've heard of it. But then, contamination of drinking water with fracking has never been the problem. It's always been an excuse to try to stop fracking. Even the EPA director cannot find a legitimate case of drinking water contaminated by fracking.
Attorney General Douglas Gansler and his staff traveled to Cumberland to ask for local input about environmental issues, particularly the health of the North Branch of the Potomac River that eventually feeds the Chesapeake Bay. What he heard ranged from comments about hydraulic fracturing of Marcellus Shale to coal extraction.
“We’re not the problem,” said Frostburg Mayor Robert Flanigan, referring to pollution in the Chesapeake Bay...
The attorney general said he believes that hydraulic fracturing, known as fracking, will eventually come to Western Maryland, but in a safe way that won’t compromise drinking water. He said his staff is working to inform landowners about the intricacies of leasing their lands to drilling companies.
Allegany County Commissioner Bill Valentine urged the state to investigate dry fracking. “If the problem is the fracking water, eliminate the problem,” Valentine said. He said other states are looking into the process. Valentine said county officials have offered to allow a dry fracking test site in the county so that it can be evaluated.
If they get dry fracking working, another excuse will arise. They've already tried the CO2 excuse, but since the natural gas from fracking has a smaller CO2 footprint than its main competitor, coal, that one hasn't really sold outside the hard corpse environmentalist times.