Citizens turned out to hear about what’s behind the “shale gas rush” that’s bringing industrial energy development to more places, and the resulting environmental and community impacts.
The shale gas rush: protecting your land and community
Across the Marcellus Shale region and nation, there’s abundant evidence that a rush to drill without strong regulations and industry accountability causes environmental and health problems. Less well-known is how the rush to lease in the absence of information, legal advice, and safeguards is harming many landowners, as well as their neighbors and communities.
For more than a decade, the Earthworks Oil and Gas Accountability Project has worked to inform property owners about their rights and what to consider before signing a lease—most recently in May at a landowner workshop in Broadway, Virginia.
The event was hosted by the Shenandoah Valley Network and Bergton-based Land, Air, Water Stewardship- Action Group, local residents committed to ensuring that people have the information they need to make decisions about leasing and the future of their properties. With many leases already signed and the first drilling permits filed, it’s none too soon to confront these critical concerns.
Citizens turned out to hear about what’s behind the “shale gas rush” that’s bringing industrial energy development to more places, and the resulting environmental and community impacts. They learned what landowners should look out for, and what they can (and have the right to) do to protect their land and family if they decide to lease. And they heard from an attorney how certain aspects of oil and gas law in Virginia—including forced pooling and what it takes to get out of a lease—can impact landowners.
Presentations from May 5, 2011 Workshop in Broadway:
Gwen Lachelt, Director, Oil and Gas Accountability Project
Nadia Steinzor, Marcellus Organizer, Oil and Gas Accountability Project
Dusty Horwitt, Senior Counsel, Environmental Working Group (Washington, DC)
A tips for landowners brochure is at:http://www.earthworksaction.org/publications.cfm?pubID=453