Issue Alert: Friday Fact Check: Who Said It?

Quote: “That is what they want to do, have the Federal Government step in here on top of the States,deny the States the right that they have under the Constitution to protect the health and safety and welfare of their citizens by passing legislation which preempts all of those State laws. This is a very bad idea and it must be defeated.”

Quote: “I would hope…that there might be a new approach to this whole issue and that approach would essentially mean let us import as much (energy) as we possibly can and let us protect and preserve as much of our domestic resources, of these hydrocarbons, oil and natural gas, as possible…”

Who said it? U.S. Rep. Maurice Hinchey (D-N.Y.) – coauthor of legislation seeking to transfer the authority currently possessed by states to regulate and oversee hydraulic fracturing over to the federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Quote: “I believe that we have an obligation to develop that natural gas responsibly to safeguard the drinking water wells used by 3 million Pennsylvanians.  We already have private wells contaminated by gas and fluids used in hydraulic fracturing.”

Quote: “Department of Environmental Protection has collected dozens of water supply samples … and determined that nearby gas well hydro fracturing activity has not impacted local wells.”

Who said it? It was U.S. Sen. Robert Casey (D-Pa.) who announced in a press release this week that hydraulic fracturing was to blame for the contamination of private wells in Pennsylvania. It was the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection who begged to differ in an assessment issued in May.

Quote: “I do think that [hydraulic fracturing] is well worth looking into. I’m happy to do that in conjunction with you or through this committee.”

Quote: “In its review of incidents of drinking water well contamination believed to be associated with hydraulic fracturing, EPA found no confirmed cases that are linked to fracturing fluid injection … or subsequent underground movement of fracturing fluids.”

Quote: “EPA does not regulate – and does not believe it is legally required to regulate – the hydraulic fracturing of methane gas production wells… There is no evidence that the hydraulic fracturing at issue has resulted in any contamination or endangerment of underground sources of drinking water.”

Who said it? In all three cases, EPA.  The first quote comes from current EPA administrator Lisa Jackson, who in a recent House subcommittee hearing suggested her agency would work “in conjunction” with Rep. Maurice Hinchey (D-N.Y.) to re-open the book on possible federal regulation of hydraulic fracturing.

The second quote comes from the landmark 2004 EPA study in which the agency found “no evidence” that hydraulic fracturing posed any risk to underground sources of drinking water.

Finally, the last quotation was pulled from a 1995 letter written by former EPA administrator (and current White House energy “czar”) Carol Browner.

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