Cumberland Times-News

Editorials

January 23, 2013

Gas drilling

Permits canceled, but state should continue study

 It appears as though fracking — the controversial method of  natural gas drilling — has become a moot point in Maryland.

The Maryland Department of the Environment  said all gas drilling permit requests in the state have been withdrawn. Instead, companies are focusing on “wet” gas states where the drilling can harvest other saleable compounds.

Environmentalists in Maryland have always been leery of Marcellus shale drilling, citing the many unknowns about the practice of fracking. Hydraulic fracking requires chemicals, water and sand to be pumped underground to break apart rock formations and free the gas trapped in the shale.

Fracking has been under way for some time in states like Pennsylvania and West Virginia. The drilling has been seen either as an economic boon or an environmental diaster, depending on one’s perspective. Marcellus Shale formations throughout the eastern U.S. harbor large untapped natural gas resources. The shale formations in Maryland are located only in Garrett and Allegany counties.

In Maryland, a state moratorium bill, to be introduced by Delegate Heather Mizeur in the House of Delegates and others in the Senate, would prevent fracking from occurring in Maryland until the state completes the series of 14 studies laid out in Gov. Martin O’Malley’s executive order on gas drilling, which also established an advisory commission.

Although gas drilling in Maryland apparently is not going to happen anytime soon, the state should proceed with its study.

Nevertheless, economics — rather than environmental concerns — may ultimately decide natural gas drilling’s fate in Maryland. If wet states can produce gas and other materials that are more valuable than those in Maryland, drillers are all but certain to pull out of Maryland for good.

 

1
Text Only
Editorials
  • Happy Easter

    For the world’s more than 2 billion Christians, Easter is the day that defines their faith.
    The exact date of Christ’s resurrection is unknown, and even the precise locations of his crucifixion and burial are uncertain. This hasn’t stopped some people from saying they know the answer to these questions and others from trying to find out for themselves, or simply arguing about it.
     

    April 20, 2014

  • We concur We concur

    We’re certain that Donald Rumsfeld, who served as Secretary of Defense under Presidents Gerald Ford and George W. Bush, echoes what many Americans feel about the complexity of filing income tax returns.
    When he filed his return, Rumsfeld sent the following letter to the Internal Revenue Service:

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • The first step The first step

    If all goes as planned, Frostburg State University will one day offer a doctorate in nursing, a physician’s assistant program and a new health sciences building on campus.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • Where to look Where to look

    Drive anywhere in Maryland and it seems there is one highway construction project after another. While it is good to see our roads and bridges being upgraded, it can be nerve-wracking for anyone traveling a long distance.

    April 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • Library week

    Public libraries remain one of the best uses of taxpayer dollars. They are open to all. Young or old, poor or wealthy, residents can use computers and read current magazines and newspapers. Compact discs featuring a wide variety of music and
    movies on DVD may be checked out in addition to novels and other books.

    April 13, 2014

  • Sunday hunting Sunday hunting

    Legislation that increases hunting oppportunities on Sundays in Garrett, Allegany and Washington counties has passed the Maryland General Assembly and reached the governor’s desk.

    April 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • One cannot compromise on God’s word

    A recent letter asked, “What is it about compromises that seem so undesirable?” Most of us are familiar with John 3:16, which says, “For God so loved the world that he gave his only son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” The next verse goes on to say, “For God did not send his son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him”

    April 13, 2014

  • Ballpark project a partnership, not a government handout

    To the Editor:
    Regarding Mark Nelson’s recent objection to county government assistance to exploring the placement of a minor league baseball team in the Cumberland region, I would answer that the project should be considered a partnership between private enterprise and government. The private support would come by way of donations collected from local citizens, currently banked through the Dapper Dan Club.

    April 13, 2014

  • Editorial Cartoon Editorial Cartoon

    April 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • Decriminalizing marijuana lines pockets of drug cartel

    Has the Maryland government decided they like contributing to the drug cartel? Their new decriminalization of marijuana does nothing but line the pockets of the cartel.

    April 11, 2014