The Post-Gazette has voiced support in an editorial for sustainable shale (“Family Affair? The Exits at the Heinz Endowments Are a Concern,” Oct. 21). Would the Post-Gazette kindly explain to its readership what is sustainable about fossil fuel extraction? Only four of 59 drillers of shale wells are even paying lip service to the “standards” promoted by the Center for Sustainable Shale Development, and as of this writing not one company involved in shale extraction has submitted itself to certification by that organization.
The Post-Gazette is itself guilty of “greenwashing” when it fails to mention that four gas industry executives sit on the board of the CSSD, including the president of Consol Energy, a company whose operations, especially its longwall mining practices, have created huge environmental problems in Pennsylvania.
The Post-Gazette has been guilty of minimizing negative shale impacts including burying a story about cancerous chemicals in the city of Pittsburgh drinking water supplies caused by fracking to a tiny article on Page 2 of the Local section on Feb. 9 (“PWSA Equipment to Target Carcinogen”).
The Post-Gazette is also aware that no industrial pollution was ever abated by operators voluntarily and that stringent regulation has always been the only effective way to protect the environment and public health.
Most important, the Post-Gazette has been ignoring the tremendous extent global warming is being driven by the huge releases of methane gas involved in shale oil and gas extraction.