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Posted Thursday, December 9, 2010
Gulf, NC - The documentary film “Gasland” will be shown on Monday, December 13 at the Gulf Presbyterian Church in Chatham County. This award winning film chronicles the environmental and human impacts that have been caused by “fracking” for natural gas across the United States.
The showing is being co-sponsored by Clean Water for North Carolina, the Deep River Park Association and the Haw River Assembly -- non-profit organizations working to protect rivers and clean water in NC. The Deep River basin in Lee and Chatham counties is being targeted for this method of mining for natural gas, and many people are concerned about the impact it can have on their wells and lands.
Hydraulic Fracturing, or “fracking” involves high pressure injection of sand, water and chemicals down thousands of feet into underground rock to extract natural gas or methane trapped in the shale or coal seams. Previously thought impractical in NC because of the existing shale’s extreme depth and low yield; this new method of fracturing and horizontal drilling would allow access.
Current NC regulations do not allow either fracking or horizontal drilling, so current regulations would have to be changed. The
energy industry is seeking to buy leases and overturn current legal protections. Many people in NC are concerned about the protection of people's well water and farmland if this type of mining begins. There have been many instance of drinking water wells being contaminated due to this mining process, as well as surface water and air pollution from the above ground storage (and leaking) of the toxic chemicals used. The fracking process also requires huge volumes of water, used to inject and break the rocks.
There are many counties in central NC that have possible shale seams containing natural gas. The Deep River area, including Gulf, has been the biggest focus to date by companies seeking to purchase leases for mineral rights for natural gas extraction. In addition to showing the film, there will be a presentation by Jordan Treakle from RAFI, a Pittsboro based non-profit that works to support and protect the rights of farmers. He will discuss the kind of leases that are being offered, and what people need to know to protect themselves and their land and farms from being taken advantage of.
There will be time for discussion and light refreshments following the film. The film will be shown for free and is open to the public.
Gulf Presbyterian Church is located at 1253 Gulf Road, Gulf, NC 27256 in southern Chatham County off of Hwy 421. A map and directions are located on the church website.
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