The clean air caucus: Protect shale residents | Arkansas Blog

Monday, March 21, 2011

The clean air caucus: Protect shale residents

Posted By on Mon, Mar 21, 2011 at 6:09 AM

Extensive interview from KAIT-TV with Rep. Homer Lenderman, who's among those who'll be working for legislation to ensure adequate oversight of clean air and water standards in natural gas exploration.

The "Shale Caucus" has already thrown down a marker against any effort to protect the environment as a burdensome cost for the drillers who suck a finite resource for export elsewhere while paying a fraction of the damage done to roads and other resources. So it's happy to see thoughtful comments from someone who understands Arkansas people, not gas drillers, are his first priority.

One of many good points:

"Anytime you look at regulating and industry, there's cost involved. When you start looking at putting in a synthetic and a clay liner, you're increasing cost of operation. When you're looking at requiring double casings, when you're requiring testing of wells prior to and after drilling, you run into cost. The industry obviously wants to maintain their industry as profitable as possible," said Lenderman. "The industry does not want to be a bad neighbor. The industry does not want to harm the environment."

"Industry tells us they're doing most all of these things now," said Lenderman.

Lenderman said if legislation isn't passed, there isn't a safeguard to protect water resources from contamination from "fracking" fluid.

Get it? If industry is already voluntarily adhering to safe practices, there should be no additional cost for responsible operators in making those practices a matter of law, right?

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