Ohio activists were unhappy on Tuesday when the Ohio Senate approved Senate Bill 315, Gov. John Kasich's energy bill.
Critics called it a "shameful energy bill."
Here is the Tuesday statement from No Frack Ohio, a coalition of grass-roots groups opposed to hydraulic fracturing or fracking:
Columbus, Ohio— Today, Governor Kasich’s energy bill, which will benefit the oil and gas industry at the expense of consumers and their vital resources, was approved by the Ohio State Senate. Members of No Frack Ohio, a coalition to stop fracking, denounced the development.
"Instead of protecting Ohioans by banning fracking, the governor and legislature are swiftly moving legislation that would do nothing to protect the public from the water contamination or earthquakes we’ve seen associated with fracking. It’s clear that our state leaders are caving to oil and gas industry lobbyists as Kasich’s bill went from bad to worse when the Ohio Oil and Gas Association intervened," said Alison Auciello, organizer for Food & Water Watch.
Cheryl Johncox of Buckeye Forest Council said, “The chemical disclosure requirements in this bill are meaningless, as the industry is only required to give a yearly report. How can a citizen establish baseline water testing when they don’t know what chemicals to test for? The worst part is that the bill would even gag physicians from sharing concerns about patients’ exposure to chemicals with their local Health Departments or first responders.”
“Kasich’s energy bill would give oversight of the fracking process solely to the Kasich administration, cutting out local communities and streamlining permitting that doesn’t allow for public comment. It’s a shame that this administration isn’t taking the dangers associated with fracking more seriously,” asserted Teresa Mills of the Center for Health, Environment, and Justice.
“I had high hopes when Attorney General (Mike) Dewine agreed that better enforcement should come about in this bill, however one of the newest amendments goes so far as to no longer require the Ohio Dept. of Natural Resources to issue violations when companies break the law. In its current state, this bill will encourage the worst companies to flock to Ohio to do business because they can do here what they would never get away with in others states. Our well construction rules do not even require companies to abide by industry standards put in place by the American Petroleum Institute," said Kari Matsko, Director of the People's Oil & Gas Collaborative- Ohio (POGCO).