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The Fayetteville Observer got it right over the weekend with this editorial:

“After all the ethical disasters the General Assembly has seen in the past few years, House Speaker Thom Tillis should have the definition of conflict on the tip of his tongue.

He doesn’t. In fact, he may be clueless.

How else could he have named Sanford businessman Ray Covington to the new Energy and Mining Commission? That’s the body that will come up with guidelines and safety regulations for natural-gas extraction in North Carolina by the hydraulic-fracturing method – fracking….”

Read the entire editorial by clicking here.

 

It was one of the many great ironies associated with controversy surrounding the issue of fracking in North Carolina that so-called conservatives opposed efforts during the 2012 legislative session to include stronger protections for landowners.

As you may recall, it was mostly conservative supporters of the fracking industry who opposed efforts to include language in fracking legislation that would have made it easier for private landowners to avoid the phenomenon known as “forced pooling” (i.e. the notion that landowners can be forced to enter into leases to sell their gas rights). Mind you, many of these same people are some of the most ardent supporters of “property rights” when it comes to things like municipal annexation.

Now comes word from Pennsylvania of a battle in which the fracking industry is butting up against another traditionally conservative ideal: local control. Read More

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The North Carolina chapter of the Sierra Club and several other state and national environmental organizations are teaming up for a “Stop the Frack Attack” rally and march on the west lawn of the Capitol in Washington, DC on Saturday July 28.

With all the attention fracking has been receiving in North Carolina and around the nation, organizers are expecting a large and energetic turnout — even by Washington standards.

The Sierra Club will be organizing free transportation (with food provided) to and from the event with a van leaving from the Triangle the morning of the 28th and returning that night.

For those interested in traveling click here to learn more.

Two things to contemplate on this lovely, globally warm afternoon:

1) Sue Sturgis at Facing South has a fine new post about the questionable industry folk who shepherded North Carolina lawmakers on a fracking “fact” finding mission last fall. As you can imagine, the main company in question is a real paragon of public-spirited corporate virtue.

2) Here’s how the dialogue should have gone between Rep. Becky Carney and House Speaker Tillis  in the aftermath of her accidental and deciding vote in favor of the fracking bill (and how it would have gone had Tillis ever tried to live up to his pledges about transparency of honest government):

Rep. Carney: “Mr. Speaker, I need to raise a point of order: I accidentally voted ‘aye’ when I meant to vote ‘no.’”

Speaker TilisRead More

 For immediate release July 3, 2012

Contact: Dan Crawford, Director of Governmental Relations, NC League of Conservation Voters, dan@nclcv.org, 919-839-0020 or (c)919-539-1422.

RALEIGH – The North Carolina League of Conservation Voters (NCLCV) announced today it is rescinding its “Rising Star” award given to Rep. Susi Hamilton on June 20th. The award was given to Hamilton for her pro-environmental record in her first term as a legislator at NCLCV’s annual Green Tie Award dinner in Raleigh. Representative Hamilton voted to override Governor Beverly Perdue’s courageous veto of SB 820, an ill-conceived, controversial bill which would allow fracking in North Carolina without insuring the proper safeguards to protect public health, drinking water, and property rights. Read More