Monday, November 14, 2011

Marcellus meetings

There are a couple of public meetings on Marcellus gas issues in the area this week.

Tomorrow (Tuesday) night, the West Virginia University Extension Service will continue its statewide public education program on the impact of Marcellus gas drilling at the Hampshire High School auditorium at 6pm. The presentation here was initiated by the Hampshire County Marcellus Committee. The only speaker listed on the agenda at this writing is John King, from the WVDEP Office of the Advocate, but the wide-ranging discussion will be followed by questions from the public.

On Thursday evening at 7pm, a group of concerned citizens from Morgan County will host a discussion with Ben Price of the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund, who has drafted an ordinance to ban the practice of hydraulic fracturing in Morgan County. CELDF drafted many of the community fracking bans in Pennsylvania, including Pittsburgh's, and has advised a number of WV communities, including Wellsburg and citizen groups in both Hampshire and Pocahantas counties. The meeting takes place at Great Cacapon Elementary School, 217 Spring Street in Great Cacapon WV.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Morgan County active on fracking

Morgan County WV, Hampshire's next door neighbor, is abuzz with activities this week about the fracking issue, starting tonight.

At 6pm this evening, the regular meeting of the Morgan County Marcellus Shale Advisory Committee will feature a presentation of the public education program that members of the Hampshire County Marcellus Committee have put together, followed by questions from the Morgan committee and the public. The meeting is held at the Morgan County Courthouse, on Main Street in Berkeley Springs.

Then at 7pm tonight, the Ecology Coalition of Morgan County and the Shepherdstown group SkyTruth ( will present a public seminar about technologies that allow anyone to track a fracking site on a home computer. That meeting takes place at the Board of Education office, 247 Harrison Ave. in Berkeley Springs.

On Sunday afternoon, Morgan County citizens concerned about fracking will gather at Great Cacapon School to learn more about the issue and to discuss the possibility of passing a countywide ban of the fracking process. They will meet from 2-5pm. The school is at 217 Spring Street in Great Cacapon WV. More information about a possible ordinance can be found at

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Occupy WV

The Occupy Wall Street movement has come to West Virginia, with ongoing occupations in towns and cities around the state. Today the movement goes global, and in solidarity with that, Eastern Panhandle activists are convening at the plaza in front of the Martinsburg library at noon. Here's the Facebook page for Occupy Martinsburg:

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Occupy DC

Longtime WV activist Mary Wildfire has an op-ed in this morning's Charleston Gazette about why she's traveling all the way from Roane County to Freedom Plaza in Washington DC tomorrow, to take part in the "Stop the Machine" protest.

In a bit of serendipitous timing, the occupation of Freedom Plaza, planned months ago to coincide with the 10th anniversary of the US invasion of Afghanistan, is happening just as the "Occupy Wall Street" protest has caught the public imagination and inspired similar camp-ins all across the country. The common theme in all the issues being addressed by these protests is the call for economic justice.

People are tired of seeing America's wealth being redistributed upward to the top one percent, who have doubled their share of the nation's wealth in the last thirty years. People are tired of corporate tyranny, and corporate control of the US government. 99 percent of Americans want democracy returned to the people.

Monday, September 26, 2011

HCMC report

The Hampshire County Marcellus Committee will present its preliminary report to the Hampshire County Commission tomorrow, September 27th, at the commission's regularly scheduled meeting at the county courthouse on Main Street. HCMC is on the agenda at 11 am for a 45-minute presentation of a public education program and followup briefing by HCMC chair George Constantz. Open to the public.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Call for fracking ban

Concerned citizens are being asked to call the White House today to request a ban on the process of hydraulic fracture--fracking--in natural gas extraction. Here's details from Save the Water Table, a very active group in Monroe County WV.

Food & Water Watch National Action Day – Call-In to BAN FRACKING encourages you to call in to the White House on September 13 as part of the Food and Water Watch National Action Day to ask for a ban on fracking. Here is a link to more information:

This guide provides tips on how to prepare for the call-in day, what to do the day of, and how to report results.

From Candace Jordan :

Welcome to when the little guys become the big guys.

There are hundreds of local grassroots groups in the US working on issues related to fracking, clean water, and environmental health. Most of the individuals that make up these groups are, like us, committed unpaid volunteers who are passionate about protecting our water, air and public health. Together all of our groups and organizations make up a profound grassroots movement that carries immense power for positive change.

Well, the time has come for these grassroots groups to become the big guys and bring about this change. We’ve been waiting a long time, and now is our time in the sun. Let’s get together and be the large constituency we are. Take action!

The National Grassroots Coalition is partnering with Josh Fox and Gasland, Credo, Democracy for America, Food and Water Watch, United for Action, and several other organizations to push a National Call Day to President Obama on September 13th. We will be calling President Obama and letting him know that we oppose Hydraulic Fracturing.

Join us in announcing to your email list, website, and on Facebook and other social media this major national action.

Here are the details of the call day:

Call the White House at 202-456-1111 or 202-456-1414 between 9 am and 5 pm EDT on September 13th.

Say, “Hello my name is ______, I live in (City, State) and I oppose hydraulic fracturing and I want renewable and sustainable energy policy solutions.”

Feel free to cater this message to one that is appropriate for your organization. The important thing is that we let President Obama know that there is a lot of opposition to fracking.

If the phone lines get jammed, send an email through the White House Contact page here. (

This is going to be the first action of many more to come as we, together steer this country to more sane and sustainable energy policies where we don’t have to poison ourselves to power our lives.

If you have questions about this event, or would like to be listed on our website, please email or contact your regional coordinator.

Thanks so much! Together we can do this!

For all that you do as active and engaged citizens!

Monday, September 12, 2011

HCMC reschedules

The meeting of the Hampshire County Marcellus Committee scheduled for September 13th has been postponed until Tuesday, September 20th, at noon, at the Hampshire County Health Department in Augusta.