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· June 11, 2012

Fracking Legislation Still Favors Industry

Governor Kaisch is signing SB 315 into law today. As Innovation Ohio has noted before this bill continues to place industry interests ahead of consumers.  The final bill does not require full disclosure of the chemicals used in drilling wells, allowing for ‘trade secrets’ to be concealed. The inclusion of the ‘Haliburton Amendment’ also means that in order to challenge the chemicals labeled trade secrets, an individual must  show that they have been harmed by non-disclosed chemicals. And yet stories continue to surface regarding the negative impact of drilling to communities. The Plain Dealer profiled the impact of drilling on one community, Broadview Heights. Susan Fowler’s family is currently unable to sell their home, as the forests behind her home have been cleared and wells have been drilled.  Her family complained of vomiting, and headaches throughout the process and eventually decided to leave their home.
“You couldn’t pay me to live in Ohio again,” she said. “It was our dream home. Now it’s a lovely home right on top of an industrial site. We feel like refugees from our city and our state.”
Over 80 wells have been drilled in Broadview Heights, creating tensions in the community, however the Mayor and City Council have found their hands tied and have minimal local authority to impact the drilling in their community. While the bill does require some chemical disclosure, it does more to protect oil and gas companies than the health and safety of Ohioans.

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