Thursday, 09 October 2014
The Fracking Forum in Franklin and the Mining and Energy Commission (MEC) rules hearing in Cullowhee were both enlightening. Senator Davis arranged these sessions in response to resident concerns.
The MEC is charged with writing rules to regulate fracking in North Carolina. The MEC representatives stated that the draft rules are the best in the country and will fully protect the health and safety of the citizens and environment. If that were truly the case then it is surprising that all of the speakers in Cullowhee were opposed to fracking and critical of the rigor of the rules. The commenters included concerned citizens and landowners, as well as scientists and engineers.
Many of the comments at the rules hearing were specific to deficiencies in the rules. Many others wanted to ban fracking or, at least, to restore the moratorium. Even if they wanted to, the MEC has no authority to stop fracking. They could make the rules so restrictive that it would delay the industry. However, given the degree of misrepresentation and half-truths presented at the Franklin forum, the MEC is clearly committed to supporting fracking in North Carolina.