OLL To Screen Movie On Drilling Danger To Water Supply

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Fracking leaves contaminants in water ...

In Verona, we are lucky to have an abundant source of clean, safe drinking water. But the quality of water in many states to our west has suffered since a natural gas drilling process was exempted from the Safe Water Drinking Act. Now some companies want to use that drilling process–known as “fracking”–in the Delaware River. On Thursday night, December 15, the Sisters of St. Dominic will be screening a movie about fracking and its impact on drinking water, “Gasland” at Our Lady of the Lake School.

In fracking, millions of gallons of water are mixed with chemicals and injected under high pressure into the shale around a potential natural gas deposit. That fractures the shale and lets the natural gas flow out more easily. But the process also diverts drinkable water–a scarce resource in many places–and turns it into wastewater that can be highly toxic. Last week, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency issued a report that, for the first time, links the fracking process to water contamination.

...that can be dangerous.

For the sisters, who are among the teachers at OLL, the potential for fracking on the Delaware hit very close to home. Since 1995, the group has made environmental concerns part of their mission and one of New Jersey’s largest organic farms, the Community Supported Garden at Genesis Farm, operates on land owned by the group in Blairstown. “Genesis is part of the Delaware River water basin and dear to our hearts,” says Sister Mary C. McGuinness, OP, one of the Dominicans.

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In late November, the Delaware River Basin Commission, a group that includes the governors of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Delaware and the Army Corp of Engineers, postponed indefinitely a vote on natural gas drilling in the Delaware. But river watchers remain wary. “In my heart of hearts, I stand for justice and for keeping earth as beautiful and healthy as possible”, Sister Mary adds.

Sister Mary will introduce the movie and provide information on fracking and its impact. If you cannot attend, you can download her information sheet here. “It is a conversation opener,” she says of the paper, which includes information from both fracking proponents and opponents. “People can go away and do research on it, and continue to examine it.”
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Virginia Citrano
Virginia Citranohttps://myveronanj.com
Virginia Citrano grew up in Verona. She moved away to write and edit for The Wall Street Journal’s European edition, Institutional Investor, Crain’s New York Business and Forbes.com. Since returning to Verona, she has volunteered for school, civic and religious groups, served nine years on the Verona Environmental Commission and is now part of Sustainable Verona. She co-founded MyVeronaNJ in 2009. You can reach Virginia at [email protected]

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