The new appointees at the Department of Environment and Natural Resources make it clear that regulations will help more than hinder oil and gas drillers. DENR and the Mining and Energy Commission are stacked with industry people.
Now SB76 (“Energy bill would end fracking bill moratorium,” Feb. 12 news story) steps right over SB820, strips the latter of any provisions to protect landowners and the public, removes the state geologist from the commission and turns DENR into a marketing arm of the oil and gas industry.
Moreover, a member of the commission started an organization – NC Oil and Gas – whose chief purpose is to “drill this land.” This member also owns many acres in the targeted area to frack and is organizing a quasi-syndicate to strengthen its bargaining position vis-a-vis drillers seeking fracking permits.
Knowing this, not one member of the MEC, not one member of DENR, not one member of the General Assembly has stepped up and said, “Stop! Enough is enough. If this man does not recuse himself, we will seek his recusal for a glaring financial conflict of interest.”