|Craig Stevens, at the EPA hearings in Binghamton, 9/2010|
Craig Stevens will be giving a speech at the United Nations tomorrow, Monday Nov. 25, 2013. Amazing his own legislators in Pennsylvania won't give him an audience! -- BH
From Craig Stevens, Citizens for Clean Water, Susquehanna County, PA
This should be interesting tomorrow, I wish you could be there with me but I know you will be there in spirit, Thank you for all your support, Craig.
Sustainable Energy for All:
Can a just solution include hydraulic fracturing?A side event in conjunction with the
5th Session of the UN Open Working Group on the SDGs
- Ambassador Stephan Tafrov, Permanent Representative of Bulgaria to the UN
- Representative from the Netherlands Mission to the UN
- François Gave, Permanent Mission of France to the UN (TBC)
- CESR rep, expert on human rights and the environment
- Craig Stevens, giving testimony on local impact
- Jigar Shaw, author of Creating Climate Wealth: Unlocking the Impact Economy
- Sean Sweeney, Trade Unions for Energy Democracy
- Chair: Emily Wurth, Food & Water Watch
The mining of unconventional shale gas deposits through the process of hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," has driven a major shift in the global energy mix. Some states are moving ahead quickly with fracking in the hopes of achieving energy independence from imported oil and gas. Other states have banned the practice believing it cannot be done without harming human or environmental health. However, the majority of states with assessed reserves are still in the decision-making process, commissioning studies and otherwise attempting to assess the risks and rewards.
In UN sustainable development discussions, hydraulic fracking has not yet received attention equivalent to the impact it is having on global energy dynamics. This event will ask whether there is a role for fracking in the Post-2015 Sustainable Development Agenda or the Secretary General's Sustainable Development for All plan.
25 November 2013, 1:15-2:30pm
United Nations North Lawn Building, Room CR-E, New York City
For more information and to RSVP:
Darcey O'Callaghan, 202-683-2523, firstname.lastname@example.org
Bulgarian Mission to the UN;
Mining Working Group at the UN;
Food & Water Watch;
Public Services International;
Trade Unions for Energy Democracy
--------------- Text of Craig's Speech --------------------
Craig L. Stevens, 6th Generation Landowner Silver Lake Township, Pennsylvania
Featured Speaker Regarding
Sustainable Energy For All: Hydraulic Fracturing?
Good afternoon ladies and gentleman, Thank You for giving me this opportunity to speak
with you today regarding sustainable energy and whether hydraulic fracturing is safe. The
reason I was invited to speak with you today is that I am living on my father’s ancestral
property where my family has lived for 182 years the endless mountains of Pennsylvania.
In January 2010 I moved full time to Silver Lake Township, Pa. and had my first
introduction to the gas industry by finding out that Chesapeake Energy signed my 95 year
old grandmother to a 10 year lease while she was in a nursing home. I was also made
aware that a gas pipeline company was planning to put a 16” line across 2400’ of my land
and requested imminent domain to force it on all of us from the state of Pennsylvania.
I am a constitutional conservative and at the time did not have a negative opinion of this
type of energy extraction technology but my neighbors in Dimock, Pa. were not so lucky.
In September of 2008 Cabot Oil & Gas drilled 3 vertical wells and contaminated the
private water wells of 33 families who all had pre drill testing that was done by Cabot.
The Pa. Department of Environmental Protection initially was trying to help and Cabot
installed temporary water tanks and delivered water for 2 1/2 years until November 2011.
The property value is destroyed when your water goes bad and like a foreclosure it drags
the value of all the neighboring properties down with it. My friends in Dimock were then
betrayed by their local, county, state and federal elected officials and even their lawyers.
The most shocking example of the fracturing was the community turning on the victims,
Their own neighbors turned against them for the promise of money from the drilling.
We have evidence that was being hidden from us by our own Pa DEP, hundreds of water
contamination cases in the state that a judge ordered released by right to know law.
The gas industry has been installing thousands of miles of pipelines along with the
compressor stations required to push the gas but has not done emissions monitoring.
We have had thousands of acres of our timber cleared to make way for the infrastructure
while the value of our trees have dropped just like the value of our natural gas minerals.
The fossil fuel industry spends hundreds of millions of dollars a year on public relations
telling everyone that what they are doing is safe for the citizens and the environment.
We are waiting for them to clean up the damage from problems they caused five years
ago, so telling the world that everything is going fine is not just dishonest it is a lie.
The earth and it’s inhabitants are paying a terrible price for this last gasp of breath for the
extraction of the energy from long deceased plants and animals that should be left to rest.
I have learned over the past four years that I had to make a decision, Do I stand with my
neighbors or stay quiet while the victims are turned to villains by the very perpetrators.
I purchased my own truck and turned it into a water delivery vehicle, set up a water
hydrant and instead of $33,000 per month that Cabot was paying I did it for $3,000.
We have given tours to hundreds of people from all over the world in the last few years
and have had the honor of meeting Arun Gandhi, Yoko Ono, Sean Lennon and RFK, Jr.
In fact the representatives of over 60 countries have come to tour with us to learn first
hand what is happening on the ground in order to get to the truth instead of the theory.
Gandhi said “ Earth Provides Enough For Every Mans Need, But Not Every Mans
Greed”, He would have joined the students from 74 US universities last week with their
Stop The Madness Solidarity Fast to encourage the world to make the move to renewable
energy. Arun Gandhi said after witnessing the destruction of our area that this was “ Rape
of mother earth” and “Violence Against The Earth And It’s Inhabitants” and I agree .
We have been trying to get these problems solved politically but it has not worked due to
the money that has influenced the elected officials, this is a Civil & Human Rights issue.
MLK said “ On some positions, Cowardice asks the question, Is it safe? Expediency asks
the question, is it politic? Vanity asks the question, Is it popular? But conscience asks the
question, Is it right? I have the opinion that continuing to drill holes in the ground for our
energy is ancient history and sooner or later it will run out and then what will the plan be?
The gas industry will tell you that running the world on renewable energy is not feasible,
I would argue that long before dinosaurs existed the sun, wind and tides ruled the earth.
We should rely on the original source of energy that has been a constant since the
beginning of time and will be serving the next 7 generations and beyond with power.
Those that say renewable energy won’t work would be wise to heed the works of JFK,
“ We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they
are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure
the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to
accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win “. President
Kennedy showed leadership and belief in the human spirit even though he did not live to
see it completed, Where is this leadership on the future of our energy needs today?
We are demanding that the leaders of the free world recognize the dangers involved in
this extreme energy extraction and safeguard your citizens from this corporate abuse.
Whether you live in the largest cities on earth or in a mud hut in an undeveloped part of
this planet, We all share the same basic needs, Clean air, Clean water and Clean land.
Renewable energy is peaceful power that will last for decades, unlike the violence of
drilling where the gas well production has dropped to near zero in just five short years.
To paraphrase Ben Franklin, “ Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a
little temporary energy deserve neither liberty nor energy “, This choice is obvious.
We would all agree that Albert Einstein was one of the smartest men to ever live, He said
“ The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting
different results “. In less than 200 years we have consumed more than our ancestors did
since the beginning of human kind and our very survival will require the conservation of
all of our natural resources, The sun, wind and tides are wasted resources if not utilized.
I am excited about The Solutions Project, written by brilliant scientists like Mark
Jacobson, Robert Howarth, Jannette Barth, Anthony Ingraffea and many more.
This plan shows how New York state can be run on renewable energy completely in the
next few decades using exiting technology and the plan is being expanded to the US.
What could be more realistic than making our own energy locally, Power that stays up
and running even when a disaster strikes like hurricane Sandy here in NYC last year.
I am here to appeal to you the world community that we are all in grave danger, They
will find some form of energy under every square inch of our land and our seas.
My neighbors and I stand as a stark example of what your future will look like, We
humbly ask you to tell President Obama to seek the truth regarding Hydrofracking.
In America we are citizens with rights to our minerals for the most part in other countries
the people don’t own theirs, If this can happen here what are your citizens in store for?
Thank you for the opportunity to speak to this body about something I am compelled to
share so that others might avoid being subjected to the same type of dangerous practices.
I encourage you to ask me any questions that may help you understand the grave nature
of our situation and the lack of help we are receiving from our own elected officials.
May you, and all beings
be happy and free from suffering :)
-- ancient Buddhist Prayer (Metta)