Monday, March 20, 2017

Gov. Hogan Pushes MD Fracking Ban

St. Patrick’s Day 2017 got a little greener for Maryland’s environmentalists. During a mid-afternoon press conference Governor Larry Hogan announced his “full support” for a permanent ban on the procedure of hydraulic fracturing—better known as fracking. Hogan’s announcement comes one week to the day after the Maryland House of Delegates voted overwhelmingly on a measure to impose a permanent ban on the procedure that some see as a future necessity to the natural gas industry in the state.

The governor noted in his remarks that there has never been fracking in Maryland. The state’s westernmost portion is located in the area known as the Marcellus shale, targeted as a prime area for natural gas drilling. Noting the state has had a moratorium in place since 2015, Hogan declared it was time for Maryland to transition from “virtually banning” to “actually banning” the controversial drilling procedure.

Fracking has frequently been blame for environmental damage—contamination of well water and earthquakes. “The possible environmental risks outweigh any potential benefits,” said Hogan. “Let’s finally put this issue to rest once and for all.”
Even Obama's EPA couldn't find any significant instances of fracking contaminating well water (and believe me, they tried), and as for earthquakes, that seems to be a function of injecting excess waste water and not just ordinary fracking.  Those are just made up charges they keep repeating over and over.
Hogan indicated he decided to step up and support a fracking ban because he was aware that legislative leaders were leaning toward legislation that would mandate a referendum “to allow for fracking.”

State Senator Robert A. “Bobby” Zirkin [D - District 11], who appeared with Hogan at the press conference, thanked the governor “for this important step. There’s no safe way to do fracking. This is not about natural gas.”
Hogan was lucky enough to be elected as a Republican governor in a deep blue state. He has to throw some bones to the dogs. I'm of two minds on a Maryland fracking ban. First, we're a physically small state, so the amount of energy we lose as a result is trivial. Let Pennsylvania make all the money.

However, it pisses me off that rural, eastern MD is denied the jobs and economic development to placate the unthinking demands of the green lobby.

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