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July 9, 2013

DRBC Moratorium: Former PADEP Head Weighs In

In response to Pennsylvania and DRBC Commissioner Tom Corbett’s June 27, 2013 letter to the DRBC (, the former head of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), John Hanger, weighs in and urges the DRBC to keep its drilling moratorium in place until Pennsylvania can provide proper oversight over drilling operations. In his July 2, 2013 letter, John Hanger, who in November announced his bid for the Democratic nomination in Pennsylvania’s 2014 gubernatorial election, encourages the DRBC to maintain its nearly three-year-old ban on fracking in the Delaware River watershed due to what he perceives as lax regulation in Pennsylvania by Governor Corbett’s administration.  Hanger asserts that Governor Corbett’s administration has “weakened the Pennsylvania [DEP] and its oversight of the gas industry to the point where the DEP is not adequately regulating the gas industry in Pennsylvania where gas drilling is now taking place.”  He then details seven reasons why, in his opinion, Pennsylvania and, more specifically, Governor Corbett, cannot be trusted to responsibly regulate natural gas drilling in the Delaware River watershed. Not surprisingly, Governor Corbett’s office has responded:
“Mr. Hanger conveniently forgets to mention in his letter to DRBC that he wants to run for governor next year.  One wonders whether that motivated him to launch such a baseless, classless, and factually inaccurate attack on Gov. Corbett.”
Given the significance of the DRBC moratorium and the infusion of gubernatorial politics, one can only assume that the last word has yet to be spoken (or written) on this subject.


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