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Stop the Frack Attack on the George Washington National Forest

frackingsmall

UPDATE:  Please see below for some important “Stop the Frack” events in Northern Virginia.

We need your help to protect healthy forests and our drinking water in the Shenandoah Valley by keeping the proposed ban on natural gas fracking on the George Washington National Forest.

Click here to stop the Frack Attack on the George Washington National Forest!

The U.S. Forest Service is under intense pressure by the gas industry to abandon its proposal to prohibit horizontal drilling on the George Washington National Forest. This ban is intended to limit or prevent the riskiest fracking, with large volumes of water and chemicals, on any future federal oil and gas leases on this Forest.

Please tell Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, who oversees the U.S. Forest Service, that the agency must stand firm. Local governments in the region, including Shenandoah, Rockingham, Augusta, Rockbridge, Boutetourt, and Bath Counties and the cities of Harrisonburg, Staunton, Lynchburg and Roanoke, contacted the Forest Service to express support for limits on fracking. Also, the great majority (95%) of more than 53,000 public comments on the new GWNF management plan supported the well-considered ban on horizontal drilling.

Please also ask Secretary Vilsack to limit vertical gas drilling. The U.S. Forest Service proposed to make nearly the entire GW Forest available for vertical drilling in the draft plan. Since vertical gas wells are usually fracked, too, and since they can disturb fish and wildlife habitat, recreation, and other resources, the potential impacts of vertical gas drilling on the GWNF need to be more thoroughly studied, with public input, before opening these lands to drilling.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

Don’t Allow Fracking in the George Washington National Forest!
with Dusty Horwitt, Senior Analyst from Earthworks
WHEN: Thursday, April 3; Pizza & Program at 7 PM
WHERE: Oakton Library, 10304 Lynnhaven Place, Oakton, VA
DETAILS: All are welcome! Whether you have seen Dusty’s presentation or not, you will want to learn about the potential for fracking in the George Washington National Forest–which is the source of drinking water for 4.5 million people in the Washington area. The U.S. Forest Service will decide in the coming weeks whether to allow fracking, and they need to hear from us and our elected officials. Dusty Horwitt from Earthworks will give a presentation and answer questions about fracking and its environmental impact. We will discuss strategy, and our action will be writing short letters to our elected officials. The letters will be easy to write–all you have to do is copy. Questions? Contact Susan Weltz at s.weltz@yahoo.com
SPONSOR: Sierra Club/Great Falls Group

Potomac Watershed Roundtable Meeting
Meeting topic includes fracking & water quality monitoring!
WHEN: Friday, April 4; 10 AM – 3 PM (Refreshments begin at 9:30 AM.)
*The Potomac Council will meet prior to the Roundtable Meeting–starting at 9 AM.
WHERE: Fairfax County Herrity Building, 12055 Government Center Parkway, Fairfax, VA
Meeting will be in Conference Rooms 106 & 107. Parking is available on floors 1, 2, and 5 of the parking garage located behind the Herrity building and its neighbor the Pennino Building.
RSVP: If you plan to attend the meeting, contact Kory Kreiseder with the Northern Virginia Soil and Water Conservation District by April 1 at kory.kreiseder@fairfaxcounty.gov or 703-324-1460. Your RSVP should indicate that you will be attending the meeting and specify whether you would like to reserve a lunch ($10)

Fracking Risks to Drinking Water for Fairfax County & DC Metro Area
Learn about the potential for fracking in the George Washington National Forest!
WHEN: Monday, May 12; Program from 7:00-9:00 PM
WHERE: Reston Library, 11925 Bowman Towne Dr, Reston, VA 20190
DETAILS: All are welcome! Learn about the potential for fracking in the George Washington National Forest, the source of drinking water for Fairfax and the rest of the DC metropolitan area, from Dusty Horwitt of Earthworks. Dusty has used his experience in journalism, law, and politics to conduct investigative research and advocacy on metal mining, oil and natural gas drilling, and hydraulic fracturing. His work has helped protect the Grand Canyon and Colorado River from uranium mining and the state of New York from unsafe shale gas drilling. The U.S. Forest Service will decide in the coming weeks whether to allow fracking and horizontal drilling for natural gas in the George Washington National Forest. Major D.C. area water providers, local governments, and conservation organizations have warned that fracking could threaten a range of resources–including the headwaters of the Potomac River, Fairfax County’s major drinking source. We will discuss strategy, and our action will be writing to our elected officials. The letters will be easy—just copy a short letter.
SPONSOR: Sierra Club/Great Falls Group
CONTACT: Linda Burchfiel at linda@lburchfiel.com
SPONSOR: Sierra Club/Great Falls Group

About the Author

Eileen is the Virginia Conservation Program Manager with the Virginia Chapter Sierra Club.