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Last Friday, a committee of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration released a report on rapid global climate change. It states that some weather events have become more frequent and/or intense, including heat waves, heavy downpours and, in some regions, floods and droughts. Sea level is rising because glaciers and arctic sea ice are melting.

The report asserts that these changes are primarily driven by human activity, usually the burning of fossil fuels like oil and natural gas.

Just one week earlier, a Prince George’s County judge declared that Dominion Resources can expand their Cove Point terminal and export natural gas. Across Pennsylvania, this gas is being extracted from shale formations deep underground using the hydraulic fracturing method, also known as fracking. Companies want to start drilling in Maryland.

However, fracking is fraught with documented problems: Massive amounts of fracking fluids made up of fresh water, sand and toxic chemicals are injected under pressure into hundreds of wells. By last year, more than 1,000 cases of stream pollution, methane leaks, drinking water contamination and resulting health effects have plagued the drill zone. Thursday evening this week, the Sierra Club and Food & Water Watch are hosting a showing of the award-winning documentary “Gasland” at the Prince Frederick library at 7 p.m.

Filmmaker Josh Fox talks to dozens of property owners, environmental experts, industry spokespersons and legislators about fracking and the challenges of natural gas extraction. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. for refreshments, literature and informative conversation. A brief discussion will follow the film.

For more information, email karamseysmcm.edu or call 301-787-6200. Come see an energy road we can avoid if we learn to limit our use of fossil fuels, construct more energy-efficient buildings, and promote solar and wind power.

Locally, Southern Maryland Electric Cooperative has brought its Hughesville solar farm online and the Maryland General Assembly can ensure this session that our state gets off-shore windmills operating soon.



Kathleen Ramsey, Dunkirk