Environmentalists pressure advocates on fracking issue

Mar 12, 2013

A coalition of environmental groups accuse other advocates of selling out when it comes to the drilling technique known as "hydraulic fracturing."  IPR’s Amanda Vinicky has more.  

 Environmentalists have warned of the dangers of "fracking" - a process that extracts natural gas or oil by pumping millions of gallons of water and chemicals deep underground.That's why it was a big deal a couple weeks ago that the Sierra Club and Natural Resources Defense Council stood with business leaders to announce they'd reached an agreement that could pave the way for fracking in Illinois.


  But not all environmental groups are on board. Suzi Rubi, of Peoria was part of an anti-fracking coalition that rallied at the capitol in protest:

 "I say to those so-called environmental groups who have given up the fight and sold their souls to the frackers, I say shame on you! How dare you work to compromise the health and welfare of our fellow citizens? How dare you cooperate with the destroyers of our planet?"

 The activists say fracking could contaminate the state's water supplies, or spur man-made earthquakes in southern Illinois.  They're calling for a fracking moratorium. Illinois Sierra Club Director Jack Darin says he too would like at least a two-year time out.  But he says there's no guarantee lawmakers would support that.  He says in lieu of a ban, it's better to have negotiated for regulations than to have none at all.