Marcellus shale health data to be tracked
The state Department of Health wants to initiate a system of tracking health and environmental data related to gas drilling in the Marcellus shale.
The department, which made several recommendations to Gov. Tom Corbett's Marcellus Shale Commission, aims to work with the panel to develop research that will make it easier to investigate complaints of illness that may be associated with gas drilling, said Brandi Hunter-Davenport, deputy press secretary for the department.
"If the department would find that the health of the citizens of this commonwealth were in jeopardy due to drilling or any other activity within our borders, steps will be taken to alert the public and advise on appropriate health responses," she said. "In the meantime, the department continues to do its due diligence to thoroughly investigate any concerns it receives."
Recommendations made to the commission include allowing the department to investigate concerns raised by citizens, routinely evaluate environmental data about Marcellus shale-related activities and educate the public and providers on the drilling process and whether or not they have the potential to cause human illness. It also wants to oversee the creation of a registry to follow people who live in close proximity to drilling sites or are occupationally exposed.
Dr. Bernard Goldstein, interim director of the Center for Healthy Environment and Communities at the University of Pittsburgh, agrees with the recommendations, which express the need for more investigation and collection of centralized resources.
He recommends performing prospective rather than retrospective investigations in order to keep up with any possible health or environmental concerns that could arise. By doing this, evaluations will be more accurate because they will pinpoint specific negative elements as they happen rather than finding them later on and attributing them to the Marcellus shale, he said.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Sandusky attorney, ‘victim’ of gambling addiction, waives hearing on charges he stole client funds
- Public session altered by Wolf
- Wife: Abu-Jamal ‘not doing well’
- Man decorating Scranton-area family grave is killed by falling headstone
- Part of Paternos’ case rejected
- Pa. trooper wounded in barracks ambush hopes to return to force
- Lawyers in Philadelphia allege racketeering a dealer scheme
- Popular Cambria County DJ sues, alleges actions of ex-husband behind firing
- Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board moves to make delivery of beer possible
- PSU president will back tuition freeze if Wolf’s funding plan passes
- VA pledges to ease restrictive rules on use of Veterans Choice Access program