‘FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 22, 2018
Pantano & Associates, L.L.C.
Seneca Nation Applauds Coudersport Borough Council Vote Opposing Fracking Wastewater Treatment Facility on Allegheny River
ALLEGANY TERRITORY, SALAMANCA, N.Y. – On what is known as
World Water Day, the Seneca Nation is applauding a recent vote by the
Coudersport (PA) Borough Council as the Nation and others continue the
fight to preserve the water conditions in the Allegheny River.
Last night, the Borough Council voted 5-1 opposing a proposed
wastewater treatment plant that would allow for the transport, treatment and
release of thousands of gallons of dangerous wastewater from hydraulic
fracturing (fracking) into the Allegheny River. The proposed facility would be
located in Eulalia Township, at the river’s headwaters.
“We were very happy to learn of this latest action, by yet another
government defending the river from what we believe is a dangerous plan,”
said Seneca Nation President Todd Gates. “The risk of contamination along
the river, and the potential environmental and health risks it could impose,
simply should not be tolerated.”
In addition to the Seneca Nation and the Coudersport Borough Council,
the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the New York State DEC, the Pennsylvania
Fish and Boat Commission, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the
Cattaraugus County Legislature, the Salamanca City Council, New York State
Senator Cathy Young, and other government organizations, as well as
individual residents have raised concerns about the project.
The Coudersport vote took place on the same days that the Seneca
Nation hosted a day-long meeting with a widespread group of elected
officials, representatives from multiple governments, and environmental
experts to discuss concerns over the dangers the project presents.
The proposed treatment facility would discharge up to 42,000 gallons
of treated fracking water into the river each day, although the plant could
process between 20,000 – 80,000 gallons daily. Water used for fracking in
Pennsylvania contains high levels of radiation, due to its location in the
Marcellus Shale region.
The Allegheny River is a source of drinking water for millions of people,
from the Southern Tier of New York down to Pittsburgh.
“The headwaters of the Allegheny River are some of the purest I have
tested. They need to be protected,” Dr. John Stolz, director of the Center for
Environmental Research and Education at Duquesne University said at the
Seneca Nation’s meeting. “We have learned from other brine treatment
facilities operating in the Allegheny basin that their discharges have
degraded the water quality.”
The PA Department of Environmental Protection, which is reviewing
the project, has reported that it has received more than 3,000 comments
regarding the project.
“The health of the river, and the health of those who will come after
us, is not negotiable,” President Gates added. “We hope that the members of
the Coudersport Area Municipal Authority and the Pennsylvania DEP do the
right thing and let our beautiful waters continue to flow free of fracking
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