Regarding the Post-Gazette Feb. 6 editorial “Irresponsible: Corbett’s Budget Plan Is Risky for Pennsylvania”: It is especially troubling that the governor intends to raise $75 million by ending the ban on gas drilling beneath state forests and parks.
This and the continued diversion of the 1955 Oil & Gas Lease Fund to the general budget demonstrate that our governor is sacrificing our hunting and fishing heritage to balance his budget. He’s burning the furniture to heat the house.
Breaking the Rendell moratorium on drilling on state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources lands is a huge step backward. The cumulative damage from the gas extraction industry will be worse than that of our past coal extraction industries, which are now being cleaned up on the taxpayers’ dime.
Our state Supreme Court recently determined that we in Pennsylvania do have a right to clean air and water. Article 1, Section 27, of the Pennsylvania Constitution states, in part: “Pennsylvania’s public natural resources are the common property of all the people, including generations yet to come. As trustee of these resources, the Commonwealth shall conserve and maintain them for the benefit of all the people.”
Our state lands are not “cash-cows” to be exploited.
RICHARD A. MARTIN
Pennsylvania Forest Coalition
Boiling Springs, Pa.