Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Inalienable Rights: Peaceful Rural Region Not so Peaceful Any More

"The Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund thinks such zoning efforts outline only the "terms of surrender," projects director Ben Price said. Instead, the nonprofit proposes a more drastic option: banning drilling outright in a municipality by establishing it as an infringement of a community's rights.

Mrs. Aubree "has rights that the state has not bothered to protect," Mr. Price said.

Ordinances drafted by the organization are being considered by residents in both Benton and Newton townships in Lackawanna County. A community rights ordinance that bans drilling was adopted by Pittsburgh in November."

Community rights ordinances that establish the rights by locally elected government officials to determine what takes place within their communities are being adopted by county and municipalities  across the country, thanks to the work of the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF). Over 124 such ordinances have been passed, including the city of Pittsburgh, in December 2010, when the council passed the CELDF ordinance in support of citizen human rights, which bans any corporate activity that harms the citizen's rights to clean water, air, health and safety, et al.

The approach is one that involves a community to stand up for what they understand are their rights.  This is taking place across not only the US, but Canada and around the world in Ecuador, Bolivia, and South Africa.

If you are not aware of these protective ordinances, contact Drilling Mora County to learn more.  A Democracy School, presented by CELDF, will be taking place soon in Mora County.  Call to sign up for this important event.

Drilling Mora County

By Laura Legere

OREST LAKE TWP. - The yellow house at 877 Fraser Road went up for sale in January, not long after the 150-foot derrick settled in the pasture just to the southwest.

The rig is there to drill eight natural gas wells into the Marcellus Shale from a gravel pad a football field away from the property line on a ridgetop in Susquehanna County.

Anna Fisco-Aubree, a former nurse in her 60s, and her husband, Maurice Aubree, 77, moved from New York to the country 17 years ago. They were looking for quiet in the expanse of farms and hills around their 4-acre lot.

Now that noise has found them, they feel there is no way to stay....continued....