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A drilling tax isn't the answer; a ban is

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As we all know, the Marcellus Shale covers a significant portion of Pennsylvania, especially the west. In 2002 when the U.S. Geological Survey discovered 1.9 trillion cubic feet of gas per acre, drilling in the Marcellus Shale region seemed promising. However, there is not a high concentration of natural gas per acre and many people do not know the extent of the damage drilling would do.

Drilling for natural gas in the Marcellus region would mean looking for patches of natural gas distributed over the entire state of Pennsylvania. Drilling would mean that we would be destroying Pennsylvania's natural heritage, altering and changing the state's environment permanently.

The process of drilling uses 3 million to 5 million gallons of water per well. Although some companies claim they recycle the water, many don't. This water runs into our rivers and streams, depositing dissolved solids that can harm human health and wildlife.

In the fall, the Legislature will consider posing a tax on drilling. While posing a tax on drilling may decrease drilling activity, it does not protect the citizens of Pennsylvania and the beauty this state possesses. Drilling in the Marcellus Shale taints a beautiful region and should be banned entirely.

FELICITY LAIRD
Chadds Ford, Pa.

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