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Letter to the Editor: Cracker Plant Impact Could be ‘Environmentally Devastating’; Town Hall to Be Held Thursday

Wednesday, August 28, 2019 @ 12:08 AM

Posted by exploreClarion

ShellPetroChemPenn (1)All are invited to a town hall “Protecting Our Pennsylvania Wilds” sponsored by the three local organizations Indivisible We Rise, Protect Environment & Children Everywhere (PEACE), and the League of Women Voters of Clarion County planned for Thursday August 29, 2019 at the Limestone Fire Hall at 7:00 p.m..

Speaker Mark Dixon, of NoPetroPa, will detail the petrochemical industry’s plan to develop our region into a plastics manufacturing hub and the ramifications of doing so.

In past generations timber, oil and gas industries fueled our economy, building wealth and creating jobs. However, with little regulation, they also polluted our air, soil and waters. Our Clarion River became one most polluted rivers in Pennsylvania. After years of reclamation and rehabilitation by government agencies and local non-profits like the Mill Creek Coalition, today the river is healthy again. This year we celebrate the Clarion as “Pennsylvania’s River of the Year.” Bald eagles and ospreys have returned; fishing, hunting, water sports and trail recreation are thriving and sustainable farming and raising livestock are also revitalizing our communities.

Our continued recovery depends upon a healthy and clean environment. Approximately 60 miles from here, in Beaver County, a giant Shell ethylene cracker plant is under construction. This petrochemical cracker plant will use ethane, a component of natural gas, to manufacture plastics. As a result, there will be more drilling for natural gas and building of more pipelines. The cracking process will emit toxic elements that are harmful to human life and the environment. Any short-term gains from building this cracker plant will have long term consequences for the region’s population and lands.

Recent press has touted our region’s counties as “prime locations for the plastic, petrochemical industry,” but if this becomes a reality, the impact to our area could be environmentally devastating.* Local businesses, farms and all of us are stakeholders in maintaining the health and beauty of our Pennsylvania Wilds. To learn more about how cracker plants operate and how we can together work to preserve our present and protect the future, please attend this town hall meeting “Protecting Our Pennsylvania Wilds” on August 29th at the Limestone Fire Hall at 7:00 p.m.

Submitted by:

Tabby Shah
Steering Committee Member, Indivisible We Rise West Central PA

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of

To submit a letter to the editor, email [email protected]

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