Welcome to the new saveMIwater.org, a website dedicated to helping Michigan’s citizens protect one of our most valuable natural resources: our communities’ water supplies. Michigan Citizens for Water Conservation was organized in 2000 exclusively for educational, scientific, and advocacy purposes. Our goal is to conserve, preserve, and protect Michigan’s natural water resources and the public trust in those natural resources for the benefit of the public. MCWC organized to preserve and protect land use, property values, quality of life, and the public health, safety and welfare of the residents of Michigan communities. Check the calendar for monthly board meetings. Check the news for the latest activities and information.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 26, 2014
Contact: LuAnne Kozma, Committee to Ban Fracking in Michigan
(231) 944-8750 firstname.lastname@example.org
“Health Impacts of Shale Gas Development” presentation by Dr. Larysa Dyrszka and fundraiser to be held in Ann Arbor by Committee to Ban Fracking in Michigan Charlevoix, Michigan – The Committee to Ban Fracking in Michigan announces the first in a series of speakers and events on the public health impacts of gas drilling and fracking. Dr. Larysa Dyrszka, M.D., a co-founder of Concerned Health Professionals of New York, will present “Health Impacts of Shale Gas Development” at Washtenaw Community College on Thursday evening, April 10 at 7 p.m. The lecture is free and open to the public. Parking is free at Washtenaw Community College.
A fundraiser reception to support the Committee’s ballot initiative to ban horizontal fracking and frack
wastes in Michigan will precede Dyrszka’s presentation, from 5:30 to 6:45 pm.
“Evidence is mounting in states with ongoing fracking and gas and oil development that people, animals, and entire communities are getting sick and paying the price for this toxic industry. Many are leaving their homes due to the contamination of their land, the water they drink and the air they breathe,” reports LuAnne Kozma, campaign director for Committee to Ban Fracking in Michigan.
“This is a timely opportunity for the Michigan Public Health Community, nurses, doctors and parents. Dr. Dyrszka provides current information and research on how this new form of energy is affecting the health of residents who live in the shadow of the drilling rigs,” said long-time public health nurse in Southeast Michigan, Diane Weckerle, RN Med. The Committee’s fundraiser reception takes place at 5:30 to 6:45 pm at the Morris Lawrence Building, room 105, Washtenaw Community College at 4800 East Huron River Drive, Ann Arbor, MI 48105. Tickets are $40 per person and may be reserved at the Committee’s website at www.letsbanfracking.org “Fundraisers.” The lecture takes place at 7:00 pm down the hall in Room 101, also in the Morris Lawrence Building.
More about Dr. Larysa Dyrszka:
Dr. Larysa Dyrszka, a pediatrician, has been speaking out on behalf of children for a long time — in defense of human rights in the United Nations Economic and Social Committee, against trafficking internationally and most recently against the health effects of fracking for natural gas in New York State. Over the past three years she has gathered data and scientific research on health problems from fracking in Pennsylvania, Colorado and beyond. She has presented testimony on the “Potential Health Impacts of Gas Drilling” in the New York State Assembly, at the NYS Democratic Caucus Hearing, at the Assembly’s Standing Committee on Environmental Conservation, at the Delaware River Basin Commission, in Columbus, Ohio and Altoona, PA, at Rutgers University, Sarah Lawrence College, to the Master of Public Health Program Upstate University of CNY, and to the NY State Bar Association conference on gas drilling. She has also given public presentations to warn residents in the southern counties of New York where energy companies have been eager to drill.
Dr. Dyrszka is a founding member of Concerned Health Professionals of NY which organized health professionals to raise concerns about the health effects of gas drilling in New York. The efforts of health professionals and other environmental activists resulted in a temporary moratorium on fracking throughout New York State. She is also an active member of Physicians, Scientists and Engineers for Healthy Energy, an organization that provides the public with independent scientific research and information on fracking and healthy energy alternatives.
The Committee to Ban Fracking in Michigan collected over 70,000 signatures face-to-face from Michigan voters in 2013. This year the Committee is focusing on fundraising and public awareness to again collect signatures in 2015. The Committee plans to bring in more medical and public health experts to warn Michigan residents and practitioners of the harms to human and animal health caused by the frack industry.
Contributions to the campaign can be made online at www.letsbanfracking.org or by check to: Committee to Ban Fracking in Michigan, PO Box 490, Charlevoix, MI, 49720. Contributions must include: contributor’s name address, and occupation, employer name, and employer address.
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Monday, March 17, 2014
Great Lakes could become carbon corridor, says Maude Barlow in new report
As governments approve tar sands oil and fracking projects around the Great Lakes, the Council of Canadians is warning that these extreme energy projects are putting the Great Lakes in peril. Council of Canadians Chairperson Maude Barlow outlines the web of pipelines, refineries and oil shipments that threaten the Lakes in her new report released today entitled, Liquid Pipeline: Extreme energy’s threat to the Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence Seaway
“We are only seeing the tip of the iceberg and only just beginning to understand the grave impacts these extreme energy projects are going to have on the Great Lakes. We often see these projects approved piecemeal but we have to step back and think about how all these projects are going to affect the Lakes,” says Barlow in her report, which is available here
. “Enbridge is asking that the Alberta Clipper pipeline transport 800,000 barrels of oil per day, Calumet Specialty Products wants to ship millions of barrels of oil across Lakes and TransCanada’s Energy East pipeline cuts through the Great Lakes watershed. If governments continue to allow projects like this, what are our lakes going to look like in 20 or 50 years?”
“Federal, state and provincial governments all say that we must protect the Great Lakes but they continue to approve these projects. The Harper government has gutted environmental legislation to grease the wheels for industry and fails to put adequate funding into Great Lakes protection,” says Emma Lui, water campaigner for the Council of Canadians. “These governments can no longer just pay lip-service. We want them to stop approving these extreme energy projects that are threatening the Lakes.”
The Liquid Pipeline report warns about the serious environmental implications of extreme energy extraction methods which are more water and energy intensive. Barlow says in her report: “The threat of extreme energy to the world’s vulnerable water supplies is very real. Large-scale water consumption combined with massive pollution from extraction methods are harming watersheds around the world. Extreme energy extraction, production and transport are about to put the Great Lakes of North America at risk.”
The Council of Canadians has launched an action alert
calling on state governors and provincial premiers to ban extreme energy in the Great Lakes before it is too late.
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> Pennsylvania Supreme Court Says It’s Unconstitutional For Gas Companies to Frack Wherever They Want
Pennsylvania Supreme Court Says It’s Unconstitutional For Gas Companies to Frack Wherever They Want
Some major parts of Pennsylvania’s two-year-old Marcellus Shale drilling law are unconstitutional, the state’s Supreme Court decided Thursday.
As the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports
, the court voted 4 – 2 that a provision that allowing natural gas companies to drill anywhere, regardless of local zoning laws, was unconstitutional. Seven municipalities had challenged the shale drilling law, known as Act 13, that required
 “drilling, waste pits and pipelines be allowed in every zoning district, including residential districts, as long as certain buffers are observed.”
The Court said Act 13 “fundamentally disrupted
” the expectations of Pennsylvania residents living in residential zones, and that the provision wasn’t in line with Pennsylvania’s constitution or Environmental Rights Amendment
, which guarantees Pennsylvanians the “right to clean air, pure water, and to the preservation of the natural, scenic, historic and esthetic values of the environment.”
“To describe this case simply as a zoning or agency discretion matter would not capture the essence of the parties’ fundamental dispute regarding Act 13,” the ruling read
. “Rather, at its core, this dispute centers upon an asserted vindiction of citizens’ rights to quality of life on their properties and in their hometowns, insofar as Act 13 threatens degradation of air and water, and of natural, scenic and esthetic values of the environment, with attendant effects on health, safety and the owners’ continued enjoyment of their private property.”
Representatives of the townships that challenged Act 13 praised the court’s decision.
“Preserving zoning is vital to local planning efforts, in order to keep industrial activity out of residential and commercial areas,” Deron Gabriel, commission president in South Fayette, told the Post-Gazette
. “Now we can keep industrial activities away from our school and residences, and there’s been more and more of a push by the industry to locate closer to the residential areas.”
In addition, challenges by Pennsylvania citizens and townships on provisions in the law that prohibit doctors from telling patients about health impacts related to fracking chemicals were sent back
 to Commonwealth Court for reevaluation. The “physician gag order” (or “frack gag
“) was recently challenged
 by a doctor who claimed it infringed on his First Amendment rights and his duties as a doctor, but his challenge was thrown out
 by a Pennsylvania court in October. The Supreme Court’s decision to send the Commonwealth Court’s decision back down for re-evaluation spells trouble for the gag order. Doctors have expressed concern
 over this rule in Pennsylvania and what it means for their patients — a report from Pennsylvania documented
 a range of health problems affecting residents living near natural gas operations, including skin rashes, headaches and chronic pain.