Natural gas development is safe, well-regulated and generates significant benefits for Pennsylvanians, as the record at Allegheny County’s Deer Lakes Park proves. Rather than deprive citizens of the public benefit future development could bring, Allegheny County Council should have respected County Executive Rich Fitzgerald’s veto to maintain status quo and focus on policies that attract investment and growth (“Allegheny County Council overrides Fitzgerald’s veto, bans new fracking in parks,” July 19, TribLIVE).
Allegheny County and its residents have already benefited substantially from the development of natural gas resources, which is consistent with the county’s public trust. With no disturbance to the park land itself, natural gas continues to be developed from more than a mile beneath Deer Lakes Park and has generated more than $10 million in revenue for the county.
Suggesting otherwise is “just propaganda to benefit political interests,” as Fitzgerald said.
Deer Lakes Park is just one example of the more than 10,000 unconventional natural gas wells that have been responsibly developed statewide. Across the county at Pittsburgh International Airport, revenues from unconventional natural gas development are funding the airport’s massive renovation, with the gas used on-site for clean power generation.
The Marcellus Shale Coalition represents the companies, men and women across our region who safely develop natural gas, lay and operate pipelines that move product to our homes and build the manufacturing and power plants that run off it. We are absolutely committed to the most responsible, highest environmental standards.
Dave Callahan is president of the Marcellus Shale Coalition. Tom Melcher is business manager of the Pittsburgh Regional Building & Construction Trades Council.
Publication: Tribune Review