Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Fayetteville shale to be discussed Wednesday evening

Public Invited to Fayetteville Shale Play Forum on Jan. 23 at Law School
A forum entitled “Environmental Considerations on Gas Drilling in the Fayetteville Shale Formation” will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. on Jan. 23 in the School of Law Courtroom on the University of Arkansas campus in Fayetteville. This event, co-sponsored by Arkansas Chapter of Sierra Club and League of Women Voters of Washington County, is open to the public and free of charge.
Panelists will include James Bradbury, a Fort Worth Texas attorney with an Arkansas background who is working on the Bartlett Shale Play development; Amy Mall, Senior Policy Analyst with the Natural Resources Defense Council, who will be teleconferencing from Boulder, Colo.; state Rep. Betty Pickett, an Arkansas legislator representing an active gas drilling district near Conway; Eric Stagg, a landowner with two well operations near Clinton, Ark.; and Lawrence Bengal, Director of the Arkansas Oil & Gas Commission. Industry representatives also have been invited to attend.
The forum presents an opportunity to learn about the gas drilling bonanza in central Arkansas and its environmental and economic impact. Reference materials on the subject are available on the League of Women Voters of Washington County web page, www.lwvarwc.org. For information, contact Joyce Hale of the League at 527-2777.

Many on this list are already aware of the League of Women Voters/Sierra Club co-sponsored forum to be held from 7-9 pm, Jan. 23rd at the University of Arkansas School of Law Courtroom concerning environmental and economic issues on gas drilling in the Fayetteville Shale Play. For you, who have it on your calendar, this is just a reminder. For others hearing about this for the first time, it is an encouragement to attend and pass the information on to any interested lists. While there has been a signifigant amount of coverage on the economic boom expected to come to Arkansas with this activity, less information has been available about the drilling process and long-term environmental consequences and costs.

With Governor Beebe even considering a special session of the legislature to evaluate the state's severance tax position as relates to gas drilling, it is critical that the public has a better sense of all the issues to have a voice in this bonanza. The organizers of this event have brought key people together who will provide information needed by those interested in environmental protection. It is important to understand that this is not a regional issue but rather a major state-wide issue even if we don't see drilling rigs in our backyard. The state's water resources and fair distribution of tax benefits affect all of us. I encourage your attendance at the forum as we all learn more about this issue. We hope to have DVD's available for interested groups who cannot attend. Please let me know if you would be interested in receiving one of these.
Joyce Hale
League of Women Voters of Washington County

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Why spend time on this? The fossil-fuel purveyors will do what they want the way they want it and the government will allow it despite public opinion. And the public mostly just wants cheap fuel and doesn't realize the potential environmental damage will affect them.