In an editorial published in the Raleigh News & Observer, Charles Ritter warns that DENR's lack of oversight could have consequences even worse than the coal ash disaster once the frackers get their turn to destroy our environment.
Fracking pits are even more dangerous than coal ash pits because:
- Fracking fluid is more liquid than coal ash slurry and flows more easily downhill into reservoirs like Jordan Lake and the rivers that feed it.
- The toxins and carcinogens in fracking fluid will not be disclosed per draft DENR rules, making it more difficult for emergency medical personnel to immediately treat those who are exposed.
- The number of fracking pits in N.C. near each fracking well could easily be hundreds of times the number of coal ash pits.
Mr. Ritter hits the nail on the head about the problems at DENR under John Skvarla (emphasis ours):
According to DENR’s official website, its mission is “to protect North Carolina’s environment and natural resources.” But instead, DENR has built a track record of weakened regulations, lack of enforcement, cuts in staffing and denial of federal grants that would support our environment, all to be more “business friendly.” DENR should be renamed for its real function: Disasters in the Environment Now and Rising. The agency has become a serious threat to our environment, our health and our safety. As important as it is to clean up the pits, it is even more important to clean up DENR.
And we submit that DENR can't be cleaned up without scrubbing the top. It's way past time for John Skvarla to go.