Families fracked as threat of shale gas pollution hits home…
“DENVER — A small group of mothers and children from Erie marched into the building that houses Encana Corp.’s Denver headquarters this morning to present a petition signed by 21,000 people demanding that the energy giant forgo a planned natural gas drilling site near elementary schools and an adjoining neighborhood…”
Why should these women have to fight for their children’s right to clean air? Probably because adequate zoning restrictions don’t exist in their neighborhood. And thanks to Act 13, they don’t exist in my Pennsylvania neighborhood anymore, either. I applaud these moms for organizing a direct action. I’m certain they have plenty of other things to do.
Closer to home, Iris Bloom of Protecting Our Waters reports that “Protesters Occupy PA Rep. Ellis’ Office, Take His Tap Water for Fracked Families.” Marcellus Outreach Butler and their allies made an eloquent statement akin to performance art. Maybe if everyone donates a garden hose, we can run it out the Representative’s window to these fracked families? Seems only fitting considering Ellis’ role in toeing the Marcellus Shale Coalition party line, lobbying for – and being lobbied for – the distressingly bad law that is PA Act 13.
Mother of All Issues
All this recent news made me think of Angela Monti Fox, who has thoughtfully spearheaded The Mothers Project, which you can read more about at mothersforsustainableenergy.com.
As a mother, I’m infuriated that a single, heavily lobbied, hugely intrusive and polluting industry is waging war on the health of families in my state, or anywhere for that matter. Families are being fracked along with the shale beneath their feet. So, in the face of seemingly unstoppable multi-national energy corporations, and a population gluttonous in its demand for cheap fossil fuel, what’s a mother to do?
As an environmentalist, I ponder this daily, and maybe that’s why the mission statement at mothersforsustainableenergy.com totally resonates:
“This is a global coalition of mothers formed on behalf of children who cannot vote or make public policy. As their advocates and protectors, we support energy sources that do not fill our children’s environment—and thus their bodies—with toxic pollutants. Recognizing that our children’s lives are inextricably bound to the abiding ecology of the planet, we support energy sources that do not threaten the stability of the world’s climate, acidify its oceans, or fill the air with asthma- inducing, cancer-causing fumes. As mothers are the first environments for our children, we mothers support energy sources that do not threaten the inner sanctuaries of pregnancy with chemicals linked to birth defects, preterm birth, and cognitive deficits.”
Monti Fox is the mother of Gasland documentary-maker Josh Fox, and she recently wrote an Open Letter to Michelle Obama, which you too can sign. The letter was published in an ad in The New York Times on Mother’s Day, 2012, and signatures began pouring in immediately afterwards.
A few dats later, Alison Rose Levy had a conversation with Monti Fox on her weekly show, Connect the Dots on Progressive Radio Network (May 16, 2012). Monti Fox calls on Mrs. Obama to “look at what is happening on the ground in many communities in terms of the impact polluted air and water from hydraulic fracturing. It’s a public appeal to her… to become our 21st century first lady, like an Eleanor Roosevelt.”
Monti Fox also recommends having a look at FrackTracker.org, which has recently begun tracking all the toxic waste water produced in the Marcellus.