New Jersey Legislature Seeks To Ban Hydraulic Fracking
New Jersey state lawmakers know that their state has had issues with pollution and they don’t want to add the consequences of fracking to the problem. Hydraulic fracking is a process used to get natural gas out of the ground. It requires a mixture of chemicals and water that poisons freshwater systems, leading to youtube videos of people literally lighting their faucet water on fire. That’s why the legislature is fighting hard to ban fracking statewide, and it is close to succeeding.
On Thursday, the Assembly Environment and Solid Waste Committee approved a bill to ban fracking waste from coming into the state from neighboring Pennsylvania, where fracking is legal. The bill passed by a 5-1 vote and was sent to the full assembly for a vote. And last week, the New Jersey Senate passed a measure that bans fracking entirely.
From the Star-Ledger:
“New Jersey does not have the large pockets of natural gas found in Pennsylvania and states farther west, but the state currently has no rules or laws for accepting byproducts. At least three New Jersey sites have accepted fracking waste, according to records from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection. They are in Carteret, Elizabeth and South Kearny.”
New Jersey is already notorious for it’s history of pollution. Thousands of sites across the state are considered hazardous or poisoned, including land and water areas. Fracking and fracking waste would only make the situation much worse than it already is.
So the big question is, will Governor Chris Christie sign the bills into law or will he veto them? Considering Christie’s deep involvement with the anti-environment Republican Party and the anti-environment businesses and corporations the party serves, plus the fact that Christie ended New Jersey’s participation in a multi-state effort to curb pollution which has led to a lawsuit , it looks as though the only way these bills become law is with a veto override by the state legislature.
But the New Jersey Assembly has fought back against Christie before. Last month, the Assembly passed a resolution calling for the Environmental Protection Agency to stop Christie from allowing businesses to skirt environmental laws in the state. So they’ve battled with Christie on behalf on the environment and health and safety of the people of New Jersey before. This attempt to ban fracking and the waste it produces is extremely important if New Jersey wants to halt to pollution of its lands and waterways to become a cleaner, greener, fresher state.