An Open Letter to President Obama on the State of the Union Speech January 24, 2012


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Dear President Obama,

We cringed when you claimed in your State of the Union speech that fracked shale gas is clean, is abundant in supply for 100 years, and will bring about 600,000 jobs.

These are oil and gas industry talking points and not based on science and facts.  A peer-reviewed, not industry funded, independent scientific study published by professors Howarth, Ingraffea and Santoro of Cornell University proved that shale gas (methane) extraction contributes more to climate change than coal.  This evidence is also corroborated by Dr. James Hansen of NASA.  At the January 9, 2012 Physicians Scientists and Engineers for Healthy Energy national conference held in Washington, D.C., a group of doctors, public health researchers and scientists presented reports on the public health threats posed by hydraulic fracturing (fracking) shale gas extraction and called for a moratorium on fracking until safety to public health can be demonstrated.  Moreover, your own Energy Information Agency announced on Monday January 23, 2012 that it is cutting its estimate for natural gas reserves in the Marcellus shale formation by 66 percent from previous estimate of 410 trillion cubic feet of gas down to about 141 trillion.  The Agency also lowered its estimates for shale basins across the United States by 42 percent from 827 trillion down to 482 trillion.  Your Agency estimated Marcellus reserves would meet U.S. gas demand for about 6 years down from 17 years in the previous outlook.

President Obama, why would you want to jeopardize the health and living condition of our children and their children for a short term energy fix?  Please study the facts and science.  Natural gas is a fossil fuel which is finite, dirty and comes from a dying industry of the past century.   It is imperative that we move the United States to an  energy future that is both sustainable and compatible with human health.

We are asking you to please listen to your grassroots supporters who are deeply opposed to fracking.  Fracking’s disastrous health and environmental consequences are too great.  You must keep your promise to stand with the American people and not the big oil and gas industry.  The only sensible solution is to invest in renewable energy now which will create lasting jobs for Americans without devastating our health and our country’s resources.

Thank you.

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