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I call on you to stand for the communities that are demanding a Moratorium on Fracking!

0613mad580x350Fracking Bill Threatens our State and Should be Postponed

An Open Letter to House Leader Michael Madigan
Download a copy of this letter as PDF

Dear Representative Madigan,

I was encouraged in May to read your statements on the dangers of introducing the fracking industry to Illinois.  In the Chicago Sun-Times report on May 13, 2013 you stated “Read about what happened in Pennsylvania”, this example is exactly what we need to be doing as a State before making any decisions.  As the current legislation on fracking comes up for a vote in Springfield, I urge you to fulfill your promise of a one year moratorium on fracking and postpone the vote that could bring this disastrous industry to our state.

I would like to encourage you to once again listen to the concerns of the communities that will be directly impacted by fracking.  In southern Illinois, five counties that comprise almost 2000 square miles around the Shawnee National Forest, support a fracking moratorium.  The residents of Jackson, Union, Johnson, and Pope & Hardin share a deep concern for the health of their families and the future of their communities.

Energy companies that specialize in hydraulic fracturing have made inflated promises to communities before.  They promise jobs and a return to prosperity in places that have suffered economic decline.  In reality, they leave harmful chemicals that our injected into our sources of food, water and shelter.

While too many people in our state of Illinois, including returning veterans of war, need to get back to work, the fracking industry is not the solution.  Instead, our state should lead the nation in the development of renewable energy jobs that will strengthen our state’s economy without damaging our beautiful ecosystem.

In Little Village, I have worked diligently to ensure that our children and community members are no longer sickened by energy companies that pollute the air, water, and soil. I also share a proound respect for the needs of returning veterans as my father-in-law was a Vietnam Veteran who after serving his country worked for Amvets as a Service Officer that helped veterans apply for benefits.

I fully understand that our state faces economic challenges.  Yet, this fracking bill also means that Illinois is also at a crucial moment in its environmental history.  For far too long our environment, health and communities have been sold out for the sake of jobs. Our communities and families are then left with the legacy of those promised jobs that not only have permanently impacted our health and communities but our states environment. We must stop this cycle and ensure that our communities are truly invested in the process.

I call on you to stand for the communities that are demanding a Moratorium on Fracking!
Download a copy of this letter as PDF

Sincerely,

Kimberly Wasserman

Executive Director, Little Village Environmental Justice Organization
2013 Goldman Award Winner

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