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Friday, December 13, 2013

Hanger Demands Corbett Stop Franklin Forks Water Tank Removals

Hanger Demands Corbett Stop Franklin Forks Water Tank Removals

Wants DEP To Reopen Investigation of Contamination Source

John Hanger, the Democratic candidate for Governor, today wrote to Gov. Corbett and Environmental Protection Secretary Chris Abruzzo demanding they intervene to stop the imminent removal of water tanks supplying up to three families in Franklin Forks whose regular water supply was contaminated with methane.

In a letter sent to the Governor and Abruzzo, Hanger also demanded the Department of Environmental Protection reopen the investigation of the source of the contamination in light of newer data indicating that the methane is not naturally occurring.

The families in the Susquehanna County community have been using the tanks since their water supplies became contaminated, not long after gas drilling commenced within a mile of their homes. The driller, WPX Energy, supplied the tanks, but has since gone to court to be permitted entry to the properties in order to remove them. WPX informed the Franklin Forks homeowners that it intends to remove the tanks this Monday.

“Please call WPX and ensure that it will not remove these water tanks. Decency demands this outcome,” Hanger said in his letter, faxed to Abruzzo’s office this morning. “Even were this not the Christmas season, WPX, which makes millions in this state, should be glad to donate the tanks to the affected families. The tanks cost about $1800 apiece. Yet WPX has gone into court…to remove them – undoubtedly incurring legal fees far exceeding the cost of the tanks themselves. “

The drilling company took these steps after a DEP investigation – details of which have not been publicly released – concluded that the source of the contamination was indeterminate. But Hanger said that he has been informed that new, sophisticated testing of the wells by an Ohio State University bio-geologist indicates that the contamination source is likely the nearby gas wells.

“The water tanks of the Franklin Forks families must not be allowed to be removed before DEP has completed a full, fair and transparent re-investigation in light of these new data,” Hanger said. “This must be done to restore public confidence that DEP retains the integrity and capability to protect our citizens’ health and environment. And it must be done to protect the Franklin Forks families from this outrageous threat by WPX.”

Hanger said he will be with the Franklin Forks families at their homes this Monday to do everything possible to prevent what he described as an “unconscionable and unfathomable” action that would render these families homeless.

Democratic candidate for Governor of Pennsylvania John Hanger is widely regarded as one of the most thoughtful and best informed progressive public policy experts in the state. Formerly a public-interest lawyer advocating on behalf of poor families, John is nationally recognized as a leading authority on clean energy development and environmental protection. He served both Governors Casey and Rendell in key positions: first for Bob Casey as Commissioner of the Public Utilities Commission, where he successfully fought to cap electric rates to save Pennsylvania ratepayers millions; and for two years as Secretary of the Department of Environmental Protection in the Rendell Administration. Throughout his career in public service, John has embodied the essence of his campaign slogan "Policy first, politics second."


Anonymous said...

Just because he demands the world should listen ? Typical liberal anything for a vote!

Wants to Know said...

Is this a precursor to John Hangar's "potential" tenure as governor? He is already attacking drilling companies so instead of "Drill Baby Drill" will his motto be "Drills be Still?" Yes, we do need SOME oversight by the DEP in SOME capacity due to the need for greed by SOME companies. What we DON'T need is some jackass DEP reps hiding video cameras watching for a drop of oil on the ground. I am not an oil producer,(but I did stay at a Holiday Inn last night). The rumors in the oil patch are that there were x numbers of new DEP reps. hired when the unconventional drilling was going full tilt. That pace of drilling has subsided but those DEP employees are still employed. These folks now have to justify their existence in the hierarchy of the DEP so this is why they are resorting to guerilla tactics (like the above tactics, which are documented) to harass the industry and write as many violations as they can.
In order for this country to achieve a goal of energy independence, we need to be open minded and look at new ways to extract this natural resource that we are blessed with. We can do it safely and the technology continues to improve to ensure a safe hole. Unfortunately, accidents happen and if and when they do, you take care of the problem. You take the lessons learned from it and move forward. Absolutely, if a homeowners water well was damaged or degraded, the well should either be fixed, a new well drilled or an alternate source of water should be supplied. The homeowner should be compensated for their inconvenience if it is a long term problem.
If we continue to send American dollars overseas for petroleum, we will continue to be held hostage by the OPEC nations. Conversion of vehicles to CNG and LNG, natural gas in more homes, converting more power plants to natural gas and the list goes on and on...plastic manufacturing, natural gas to gasoline, etc.

Why, in this day and age, do we allow the absolute LEAST efficient source of heat (electricity)to continue to be utilized in residential and commercial buildings? If we must have intervention, how about forcing the utilities to reach ALL of the homes and businesses. Yes, it costs money to lay smaller lines and unfortunately the return on their (gas co.) investment isn't as great vs. their costs(ROI), lowers the costs to homeowners and businesses and eliminates an efficient usage of energy.
With all of that being said, with the PA DEP acting like this under Gov. Corbett, what are we in for IF Mr. Hangar gets elected? I have asked this question before, Please Mr. Hangar, would you clarify your position on the drilling and the oil and gas industry? As we all know the folks in Harrisburg don't know, or don't care, that their are a number of good, caring, decent people that live NORTH OF I-80!!! Come up to the great north and talk with us. Tell us your thoughts and plans if you get elected. We already know that we have been neglected in the past when it comes to state funding for water, sewer, (read PENNVEST)and highway projects etc. Show us your way of "Policy first, politics second" and clarify what you stand for instead of just a catchy campaign slogan.

Anonymous said...

John Hanger has talked with people all across the state. Here's the list of stops across the northern tier from his tour in August, 2013.
If you want to know what John Hanger stands for and what he will do as Governor, best information source is his Facebook page. or his website

Monday, August 19

9:00-10:00 Pottsville

11:00-12:00 Hazleton – Corner of Broad and Wyoming Sts

3:00-4:00 Wilkes-Barre – Corner of N. Main and Market (Public Square)

Tuesday, August 20

8:30-10:00 Scranton, Downtown

11:00-12:00 Hawley

1:00-2:00 Honesdale

3:30-4:30 Montrose Square to the right of the Courthouse

Wednesday, August 21

9:00-10:00 Dushore

10:30-11:30 Towanda

1:30-2:30 Wellsboro

3:30-4:30 Coudersport

Thursday, August 22

9:00-10:00 Bradford

11:30-12:30 Johnsonburg

1:30-2:30 St. Mary’s

3:30-4:30 Emporium

Friday, August 23

10:00-11:00 Lock Haven

12:00-3:00 State College – Grange Fair

Anonymous said...

he will be like the rest lie with a smile, we need someone that will look out for the people and change some of the laws that kill little business people road tax fuel tax on truck run less 10,000 miles ayear