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From Orion Magazine, an absolute must read by Sandra Steingraber:

29. In 2011, Chesapeake Energy, a top producer of natural gas, was a corporate sponsor of the Pennsylvania Breast Cancer Coalition. In response to questions about possible conflicts of interest, the coalition's executive director Heather Hibshman said, "I'm not a scientist. I'm not a researcher. I run a nonprofit. I'm going to leave it at that." Hibshman also said that she was unaware of any correlations between fracking and breast cancer.

30. Fracking for the cure.

31. In Silent Spring, Rachel Carson pointed out that pesticides were rapidly rolled out after World War II not because of some unmet pest-control need (like, say, farmers suddenly overrun with bugs and weeds). Rather, abundant leftover stockpiles from wartime use were in need of a domestic market. And so, with the help of Madison Avenue, one was created. DDT, a military weapon, was thus repurposed for domestic use without any premarket testing for safety. An abundance of former military planes that could be cheaply converted into spray planes--and an abundance of former military pilots who loved to fly them--helped seal the deal.

32. In March 2012, it was announced that the town of Monaca, in Beaver County, Pennsylvania (twenty-eight miles northwest of Pittsburgh), would be the site for a massive new ethylene cracker facility--the first in Appalachia--that will create chemical feedstocks for the plastics industry out of the other hydrocarbons that come up with the gas when Marcellus Shale is fracked. Most notably, ethane. This plant is being rolled out not because of some unmet need for more plastic. Rather, it is being built to solve a disposal problem for the energy industry and--of course--to create jobs. Petrochemical crackers are notorious air polluters, and the air of Beaver County, Pennsylvania, already exceeds legal limits for ground-level ozone (smog) and fine particles, which is the very sort of pollution that crackers create. Michael Krancer, Pennsylvania's Department of Environmental Protection secretary, is not worried. "The plant will be state-of-the-art and built by a world-wide, world-class, environmentally responsible company."

33. That company would be Shell Oil.



Sweet Jesus is right. When will we become a sane society?

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