Saturday 23 September 2017

Press Statements (57)

Citing Growing Science, a Broad Coalition of 61 Health, Environment, Faith and Advocacy Groups Unite to Call on the State Legislature to Pass a Long-Term Moratorium on Fracking in Maryland  Organizations warn that permitting fracking in Maryland poses significant threats to the health and safety of Marylanders, and to the quality of our air, water and soil Annapolis, MD—Seeking to protect Marylanders from the public health and environmental risks of fracking, 61 organizations are calling for a long-term moratorium on high-volume hydraulic fracturing in Maryland. In a position statement released today, the groups emphasized that, “there is no evidence that the state can regulate hydraulic fracturing in a way that adequately protects public health, natural resources, or the economy.” The diverse coalition of local, state and national public health organizations, faith, environmental, and other advocacy groups citing numerous peer-reviewed studies and reports, are calling on the Maryland General Assembly to pass a long-term moratorium to protect citizens from the many recorded dangers associated with fracking. A recent analysis found that 96 percent of all papers published on health impacts indicate potential risks or adverse health outcomes. “Recent studies suggest that unconventional natural gas development can cause both short-term and long-term adverse health impacts, some of which may be irreversible,” said Dr. Gina Angiola, a member of the Board of Directors of Chesapeake Physicians for Social Responsibility. “These types of health impacts carry tremendous emotional and economic costs for families and communities. We urge the Maryland Legislature to adopt a long-term moratorium to allow time for…
Rule will not adequately protect water or communities. Fails to follow science and properly designate coal ash as hazardous waste. Washington, DC -- December 19, 2014 -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today has issued its first-ever national rule on the disposal of coal ash. Several local Waterkeepers and Waterkeeper Alliance have been working for years to secure federal rulemaking for this toxic substance, which is currently subject to less regulation than household garbage in most states. EPA's rule still leaves critical gaps in the protection of human health and the environment by failing to classify coal ash as hazardous waste and leaving primary oversight of coal ash regulation to states who, for decades, have failed to prevent catastrophic coal ash leaks and spills that have contaminated rivers, drinking water sources and communities. Along the James River, the Lower James and Upper James Riverkeepers have identified five major coal ash disposal sites with up to 5 billion gallons of coal ash as part of their River at Risk Campaign. Yesterday, the Southern Environmental Law Center (SELC) filed a notice of intent to sue Dominion’s Chesapeake Energy Center for leaking coal ash pits along the Elizabeth River. In September, SELC representing Potomac Riverkeeper filed a notice of intent to sue Dominion’s Possum Point facility for leaking toxic coal ash from disposal sites that lack permits. After several years of legal wrangling, Potomac Riverkeeper and Patuxent Riverkeeper negotiated a consent decree with NRG Energy and the state for the clean up of three leaking coal ash…
Latest Version of Rules to Reduce Pollution by Better Controlling Manure Provide Several Exemptions for Farmers and a Six-Year Phase In (Annapolis, MD) – With today’s publication in the Maryland Register of new rules to better control manure, a coalition of nonprofit organizations called on the Maryland General Assembly to support the proposed Phosphorus Management Tool (PMT) regulation. A new phosphorus rule has been proposed three times in the last two years but has been repeatedly delayed due to pressure from industry lobbyists and legislative leaders.   Today a 30-day public comment period on the regulation begins, and the Maryland Administrative, Executive & Legislative Review committee has the opportunity to review and comment on them.    The Maryland Clean Agriculture Coalition says the latest version of the regulation includes a reasonable implementation plan for the state-of-the-art tool, as well as several exemptions for certain farms and a six-year phase-in timetable.   “Studies show phosphorus pollution is getting worse, not better – yet this regulation has been repeatedly delayed,” said Karla Raettig of the Maryland League of Conservation Voters. “It’s time for the Maryland legislature, with leadership from President Miller and Speaker Busch, to swiftly endorse them.”    The PMT would reduce pollution by limiting manure applied to farm fields already contaminated with excess phosphorus levels, and scientists say it would improve water quality, protect public health and reduce harmful algae blooms.   “Governor O’Malley kept his commitment to Marylanders and to the Chesapeake Bay by finalizing this much-needed rule to…