Gas news at a glance
February 1, 2012 —
Brockovich, Gibbs investigate bizarre teen behavior for environmental link
Activists Erin Brockovich and Lois Gibbs say New York officials might have prematurely ruled out environmental reasons for teens exhibiting neurological symptoms, as reported by Energy Central Daily. 14 LeRoy Junior-Senior High School female teens and one male have developed involuntary twitches and verbal outbursts similar to Tourrette’s syndrome, with some reporting fainting and seizures. Neurologists have currently concluded the teens suffer from a psychological malady called “conversion disorder,” in which a stress-induced psychological incident converts to physical symptoms. Jeffrey Hammond of the New York State Department of Health said state officials looked into the cluster, but were not speculating about the cause. He said indoor air testing of the school district found no evidence of toxic-chemical contamination, a lack of fresh air, mold or other air problems. Environmental groups maintain that more investigation is needed to rule out environmental contamination based upon two additional factors. It is alleged that the school may have been built upon soil contaminated by a 30,000 gallon spill of the toxic solvent trichloroethylene from a 1970 train derailment. In addition, five active natural gas wells owned by the school district surround the junior-senior high school building.
GOP senators now oppose gutting local control of drilling
Nine Republican members of the Pennsylvania Senate have announced their opposition to a key provision of the drilling legislation passed by both the Senate and House in late 2011. Sens. Chuck McIlhinney (Bucks), Tommy Tomlinson (Bucks), Ted Erickson (Delaware), Rich Alloway (Franklin), John Rafferty (Montgomery), Stewart Greenleaf (Montgomery), Pat Vance (Cumberland), Mike Folmer (Lebanon) and Bob Mensch (Montgomery) sent a letter to Senate Republican leaders stating their opposition to the bills' impact on the ability of local governments to regulate certain aspects of drilling in their communities. See the letter at http://www.pennfuture.org/UserFiles/Daze/20120127_Letter_SB1100HB1950_Se....