If they really care about protecting personal property rights vis a vis big powerful institutions, then by God let’s hope they read this article in this morning’s edition of Raleigh’s News & Observer about the threats to them posed by the fracking industry.
As Michelle Nowlin of Duke points out:
“Many citizens will be surprised to learn that North Carolina law authorizes private, for-profit corporations to take the property of private landowners for certain purposes. Relevant to the fracking debate is the authority of for-profit entities that build pipelines and mains to transport petroleum products, coal, gas, limestone or minerals to condemn private land. This means that private companies engaged in natural gas production within North Carolina may condemn any person’s land in order to lay pipes to transport natural gas from the production wells….
The potential threats to drinking water, natural resources and public health from hydraulic fracturing are serious and, appropriately, are the primary focus of most of the public dialogue as North Carolina considers whether to lift the 50-year old prohibition on horizontal drilling and injection of toxic chemicals into underground drilling wells. But the rights of private landowners should also be considered and protected, especially when their property may be sacrificed to benefit someone else’s fracking operation. Landowners should be able to protect their property and local governments should have a say about impacts to their communities.”
Read the entire article by clicking here.