Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Concerned Citizens Say Public Meeting Needed Since Carcinogenic Chemicals Have Been Found in Youngstown Drinking Water

News Release:
Frackfree Mahoning Valley
http://frackfreemahoning.blogspot.com/
Frackfree America National Coalition, based in Youngstown, Ohio
frackfreeamerica.org
_______________________________________________________
For Immediate Release: November 19, 2019
Contact: Lynn Anderson, M.Ed. Phone: 330-792-0428 or 234-201-8007
_______________________________________________________
 Concerned Citizens Say Public Meeting Needs to be Held Since
Carcinogenic Chemicals Have Been Found in Youngstown's Drinking Water
Concerned citizens want to hear Youngstown Public Water’s plan to provide filtration to all their customers to eliminate the cancer risk caused by the chemicals now found in our drinking water. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) Tap Water Database Update(1), released October 22, 2019, revealed that Youngstown City Public Water System contains 7 cancer-causing chemicals. The City's water supplier, Mahoning Valley Sanitary District (MVSD) does not test for the first 6 of the following:

1. Bromodichloromethane
2. Dibromochloromethane
3. Trichloroacetic Acid
4. Chloroform
5. Hexavalent Chromium
6. Dichloroacetic Acid
7. Total Trihalomethanes

When we examined the MVSD website to see what they do test for we were horrified that they have listed "fracking lab results" and show how much Benzene, Ethylbenzene, Toluene, Xylene and Bromide is currently in our drinking water.
We are concerned that the Trihalomethanes previously determined to be present in our drinking water at unsafe levels now contain the more dangerous brominated forms.
Youngstown Public Water Engineer Dan Blakely sent a letter to all customers in September 2015 when the U.S. EPA cited them for unsafe levels of trihalomethanes in our drinking water. It warned that drinking this water over time could cause cancer.
Given the well-known events in Flint, Michigan resulting in the contamination of their water supply, what concerns us most is the possibility of a similar pattern of dismissal of citizen concerns by state and local officials.
We need officials to take action to protect the public health and safety immediately.
We would like to ask for a public meeting to be held within the first two weeks of December to address this serious issue. We would like to invite James W. Jones, Chief Water Engineer of the Mahoning Valley Sanitary District, Harry L. Johnson, III, Water Commissioner of Youngstown, and representatives of the Environmental Working Group.
Citizens want to hear MVSD’s and Youngstown Public Water System’s plan to provide filtration to all their customers to eliminate the cancer risk caused by these chemicals being in our drinking water.

For more information or media inquiries, please see frackfreemahoning.blogspot.com   Email:  frackfreemahoning@gmail.com  or call:  234-201-8007

[1] https://www.ewg.org/tapwater/system.php?pws=OH5002303
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Youngstown City drinking water consumer report
https://youngstownohio.gov/sites/default/files/forms/OH017795-1_WR.pdf

Friday, April 12, 2019

OH SB33 Testimony by Rev. Joan Van Becelaere, Executive Director of UUJO (Unitarian Universalist Justice Ohio)



Opponent Testimony – SB 33
April 1, 2019
Rev. Joan VanBecelaere Executive Director, Unitarian Universalist Justice Ohio, Columbus OH
uujoanvanb@gmail.com
Chairman Eklund, Vice Chair Manning, Ranking Member Thomas and members of the Senate Judiciary Committee,
I am a Unitarian Universalist minister and the Executive Director of Unitarian Universalist Justice Ohio which includes the UU congregations in Ohio and their many members. I am also a concerned citizen of Ohio and I am deeply opposed to SB 33.
Others will argue about how this bill attacks freedom of speech and freedom of association. I want to also raise the argument that this bill attacks freedom of religion and prohibits justice-oriented faith traditions from exercising what they believe is their religious duty to engage in public witness at those places where the health and life of people are endangered and the sacred integrity of the environment is put in jeopardy.
SB 33 does not directly focus on preventing terrorist attacks. Why, then is it needed? The major purpose seems to be to discourage justice-focused organizations and their members from protesting oil and gas sites that pose a danger to health and pollute land, water and air.
Ohio law already prohibits ‘criminal trespass’, ‘aggravated trespass’, and ‘criminal mischief’ to property. This bill only serves to increase penalties for citizens and non-profit organizations who engage in non-violent public witness at critical infrastructure sites. It was originally drafted by the oil and gas industry in response to the public outcry at Standing Rock and other locations where landowners and fellow citizens protested large oil, gas, and pipeline projects.
The bill adds a new prohibition under the offense of “aggravated trespass”, that expressly prohibits a person from entering or remaining on a “infrastructure facility” with purpose to destroy or “tamper” with the facility. And the bill adds a new prohibition under the offense of “criminal mischief” that prohibits a person from destroying or “improperly tampering” with a “infrastructure facility”.
SB 33 makes violation of these new prohibitions third degree felonies. These undefined acts of tampering or intending to tamper do not have to be violent in nature to be judged worthy of a felony conviction under SB
33. And the definitions of “tamper” or “intend to tamper” are wide open to a variety of possible interpretations. One person’s non-violent, faith-based public witness may be another’s “tampering.”
And then, SB 33 specifies that any organization found guilty of the vaguely defined act of “complicity” in a violation under this bill, is to be punished with a fine ten times the maximum that can be imposed on an individual for a third-degree felony. This means possible fines up to $100,000.
The bill also holds a person or organization that pays a violator’s fines or damages in a civil action, liable for any judgment against the person who may have ‘tampered’ with the infrastructure facility. Thus, if a faith-based justice group or a church is found complicit (whatever that means) when one of its members is found guilty of “intending to tamper” or “improperly tampering” with a “critical” facility, the church may face a $100,000 fine. Of course, this would destroy most churches and most faith-based organizations.
And a church may not assist a member in paying a fine in a civil action. Which blocks a congregation from its religious duty to care for its members in times of distress and need.
SB 33 would criminalize the ministry of justice-focused churches and faith-based justice organizations who engage in and promote peaceful public protest at critical infrastructure sites. Congregations from many different faith traditions in Ohio could be held liable for the crime of complicity, be forced to pay fines that would destroy the, and be unable to assist their members in need. This constitutes an attack on freedom of religion. People of faith who feel called by God to speak truth to power and stand up for environmental justice could find their congregations deeply damaged or destroyed under SB 33. It would become a crime to assemble for public witness at those facilities that are the worst offenders for environmental pollution, that create health crises in our most vulnerable communities. It would be illegal for people of faith to speak truth to power at those pipelines and fracking wells that expand fossil fuel use and destroy our climate.
In summary, SB 33 is a dangerous assault on civil liberties: freedom of speech and freedom of assembly. And SB 33 also attacks freedom of religion and the right to speak in holy witness to those who believe their economic power is threatened by protest. This bill is clearly intended to keep faith groups as well as environmental groups on the sidelines for fear of being found guilty of complicity and facing their own destruction.
When Americans abandon their commitment to freedom of speech and assembly and freedom of religion, the world will notice, and disaster will follow. SB 33 deserves to be condemned by all people of faith.

Sunday, January 27, 2019

Ohio Residents Open Legal Fund To Stop Fracking Waste Injection Well - Please Support!

Residents of Brookfield, Ohio and the surrounding area have been lawfully opposing five (yes,  five!) proposed toxic fracking waste injection wells planned to be constructed and operated way too near family homes, a stream,  businesses, and government buildings in a region that we believe is now man-made earthquake-prone and is an abandoned coal mine area.

Will you please help us stop this insanity? Please donate if able and please share our GoFundMe, thank you!
https://www.gofundme.com/help-stop-fracking-waste-injection-well-legal-fund


Gloria Douglas is a grandmother who has lived in her beloved Wyngate Manor home for 31years. Gloria calls it her “forever-home” because she can’t imagine ever having to leave the home she’s lovingly cared for and lived in all these years.[1]

Gloria’s home is way too close to waste injection well number five – the one we are currently trying to lawfully stop.[2] Her home is in the below image which is courtesy of Ted Auch, Great Lakes Program Coordinator, The Fractracker Alliance, www.fractracker.org


There are hundreds of homes with families living nearby in Brookfield.  It is tragic and astonishing that this heavy industrial injection well operation could even happen to the hundreds of people who live so close to this injection well.

READ MUCH MORE at campaign description: https://gf.me/u/qb6n2d

Notes:
[1] “Brookfield residents rally to stop injection wells,” by Michael Roknick, The Herald (Sharon, PA), April 7, 2018 https://www.sharonherald.com/news/local_news/brookfield-residents-rally-to-stop-injection-wells/article_c9d67d66-3a16-11e8-a151-93733b6a553b.html ;
 “Brookfield one step away from getting more injection wells,” 21 WFMJ – TV News, by Glenn Stevens, March 21, 2018,  http://www.wfmj.com/story/37779520/brookfield-one-step-away-from-getting-more-injection-wells

[2] “Fracking waste injection wells proposed to be sited way too near family homes, businesses and government buildings:   A heartfelt plea for help to lawfully stop them, Blog post, Frackfree America National Coalition, January 19,2018     http://www.frackfreeamerica.org/blog/fracking-waste-injection-wells-proposed-to-be-sited-way-too-near-family-homes-businesses-and-government-buildings-a-heartfelt-plea-for-help-to-lawfully-stop-them

Monday, September 24, 2018

Citizens Townhall-style Meeting on NE Ohio Fracking Waste Injection Wells on September 27, 2018

Citizens will hold an anti-injection well public townhall-style meeting in Brookfield, Ohio on Thursday, September 27, 2018,  at 7 PM to 9:30 PM,  to discuss proposed fracking waste injection wells planned to be sited way too near family homes, businesses, government buildings and important waterways. 
       Building upon the success of a very well-attended August meeting, citizens will hold another public town hall-style meeting on Thursday, September 27, 2018 at 7 PM to 9:30 PM at the Brookfield Ohio Fire Hall (social hall), at 774 State Route 7 NE, Brookfield, Ohio 44403.  There will be a public discussion about five proposed Brookfield fracking waste injection wells and also a new toxic waste injection well proposed for Hubbard Township, Ohio.

A petition opposing the proposed Hubbard Township injection well will be available for attendees to sign.

        These wells are planned to be sited way too near family homes, businesses, government buildings, and important waterways. This is unacceptable, say citizens.
       Meeting organizers are reaching out to invite and involve residents from Brookfield, Hubbard, Hubbard Township, Vienna, North Lima, and the entire region, including people in Pennsylvania. All elected and public officials and candidates are also invited. The meeting is free and open to the public. All media are urged to please attend.

       Meeting organizers say that Ohio cannot be used as a toxic waste dumping ground.  
       Injection well-related spills and releases that result in water contamination can occur such as the release in Vienna, Ohio in 2015 that destroyed two wetlands and a pond.  Groups say injection wells, such as the ones proposed for Brookfield and Hubbard Township, pose unacceptable risks of potential adverse impacts to air, water, and land. They also pose unacceptable risks of more man-made earthquakes, like the 2011 magnitude 4.0 Youngstown injection well-linked quake, in an already earthquake-prone region where abandoned coal mines exist.
       Citizens are calling for the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) to be proactive and to immediately deny the injection well permits and revoke those that are already issued in order to protect the public interest, the environment, and the public health, safety, and welfare.
       Groups stress that ODNR must not force families, individuals, and communities to accommodate and adjust to the unfair and risky placement of toxic waste injection wells located practically in some peoples’ backyards. Citizens have private property rights and rights to the protection of public health and safety, as well, that must not be violated by the unwise siting of injection wells so near family homes, important waterways, and other vulnerable structures.

       Groups helping to coordinate the September 27th meeting are Brookfield Citizens Against Injection Wells (BCAIW)  ( https://stopfrackingwasteneohio.blogspot.com/  )    Frackfree America National Coalition (FANC), based in Youngstown, Ohio (www.frackfreeamerica.org ) and  Buckeye Environmental Network (BEN) (www.buckeyeenvironmentalnetwork.org ).
         The groups, FANC and BEN, believe based upon science and experience, that injection is inherently unsafe and that no amount of regulation can make it safe, especially in a highly populated, earthquake-prone area where Hubbard Township and Brookfield are located and where there are abandoned coal mines.

       For information about local injection wells, man-made earthquakes, and more, please see:
http://www.frackfreeamerica.org/blog/public-comment-odnr-should-denyrevoke-permits-of-5-fracking-waste-injection-wells-in-brookfield-ohio-december-2017#_ednref2:

       The Facebook event page for the September 27th town hall is at:
https://www.facebook.com/events/490835774744843/

       For more information or media inquiries, please see www.frackfreeamerica.org   Email:  frackfreeamerica@gmail.com     or call:  234-201-8007

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Citizens' public townhall-style mtg Brookfield #Ohio Thurs Sept 27, 2018 @ 7-9:30 PM on proposed #fracking waste injection wells planned to be sited   way too near family homes, biz &, govt bldgs & imp waterways - Hubbard, Brookfield, Vienna, North Lima, & NE OH region invited
Citizens will hold an anti-injection well public townhall-style meeting in Brookfield, Ohio on Thursday, September 27, 2018, at 7 PM to 9:30 PM, to discuss proposed fracking waste injection wells planned

Thursday, August 30, 2018

Citizen Townhall: State of Fracking Waste Injection Wells on August 30, 2018 Hubbard, Ohio

A town hall-style, informational, open-to-the-public meeting about fracking waste injection wells is to be held on Thursday, August 30, 2018 in Hubbard, Ohio 
       A citizen town hall-style meeting to be held on Thursday, August 30, 2018 at 7 PM to 9:30 PM at the Brentford House in Hubbard, Ohio (more details below) will address fracking waste injection wells, in general, and also a new toxic waste injection well proposed for Hubbard Township, Ohio planned to be sited way too near family homes, businesses, government buildings and an important waterway.  Five proposed Brookfield, Ohio injection wells and North Lima and Vienna, Ohio injection wells will also be discussed.

       Astonishingly, despite Trumbull County having numerous waste injection wells already, yet another toxic waste injection well is being proposed for a highly populated area in Hubbard Township, Ohio.  This is unacceptable. Groups opposing injection wells say this is an issue for the entire region and the state, especially since scientists have linked injection wells to man-made earthquakes, even as large as a magnitude 5.7 quake that occurred in Oklahoma in 2011.

       There are also unacceptable risks to water posed by injection wells.  Spills and releases that result in water contamination have occurred such as the release in Vienna, Ohio in 2015 that destroyed two wetlands and a pond.  Groups say injection wells, such as the one proposed for Hubbard Township, pose unacceptable risks of adverse impacts to air, water, and land.  They say Ohio cannot be used as a toxic waste dumping ground.

       Concerned Hubbard citizens, their allies, and groups opposing injection wells will hold a town hall-style, informational public meeting on Thursday, August 30, 2018  at 7 PM to 9:30 PM at the Brentford House , at 737 Myron Street, Hubbard, Ohio, 44425 to provide information and to let the community voice their concerns and suggestions regarding lawfully halting fracking waste injection wells.

       The meeting is free and open to the public. All media are urged to please attend.

       At the beginning of the meeting, distinguished speakers will provide information about injection wells, hazardous waste, and other relevant issues. Then the floor will be opened to the public and media for comments, questions, and answers.
       Confirmed speakers are:

  • Battalion Chief of the Youngstown Fire Department, Silverio Caggiano, who has served for 37 years with the fire department and who serves on numerous hazardous materials technical advisory committees for the state.  Chief Caggiano also has 27 years as a hazardous materials/ WMD Specialist.
  • Hubbard Township Trustee Rick Hernandez, Jr.
  • Teresa Mills, Executive Director of the Buckeye Environmental Network (BEN) and Community Organizer for the Center for Health, Environment and Justice (CHEJ).   
       Town hall organizers say that at the meeting, attendees can get up-to-date information on the status of the proposed injection wells, sign the citizen petition to oppose the proposed Hubbard Township injection well, and voice their concerns, experiences, and expertise regarding the wells.
       Saying that communities need to stick together in their opposition to the injection wells, meeting organizers are reaching out to invite and involve  residents from Hubbard, Vienna, Brookfield, North Lima and the entire region, including people in Pennsylvania. All are urged to attend.
       Groups helping to coordinate the meeting are Citizens Against Injection Wells – Hubbard Twp., Frackfree America National Coalition (FANC), based in Youngstown, Ohio (www.frackfreeamerica.org ) and  Buckeye Environmental Network (www.buckeyeenvironmentalnetwork.org ).
       The groups, FANC and BEN, believe based upon science and experience, that injection is inherently unsafe and that no amount of regulation can make it safe, especially in a highly populated, earthquake-prone area where Hubbard Township and Brookfield are located and where there are abandoned coal mines.

   For more information or media inquiries, please see www.frackfreeamerica.org   Email:  frackfreeamerica@gmail.com     or call:  234-201-8007
        For information about local injection wells, man-made earthquakes, and more, please see:
http://www.frackfreeamerica.org/blog/public-comment-odnr-should-denyrevoke-permits-of-5-fracking-waste-injection-wells-in-brookfield-ohio-december-2017#_ednref2

UPDATES can be found on facebook event: https://www.facebook.com/events/675991752775040/

Injection Well FACT SHEET (August 2018)  click to download file

Contact: Jane Spies, M.S. Ed.: Phone:  330-619-0730 or   234-201-8007 or
Contact: Teresa Mills: Phone:   614-507-4406 or e-mail:   tmills@chej.org

click images to view larger:
poster for Thursday nite - NE Ohio Fracking-Waste Injection Wells Townhall-meeting August 30, 2018 @ 7pm @ Brentford House, 737 Myron Street, Hubbard, Ohio, 44425
Thursday nite - NE Ohio Fracking-Waste Injection Wells Townhall-meeting August 30, 2018 @ 7pm @ Brentford House, 737 Myron Street, Hubbard, Ohio, 44425   



faults map show how earthquakes call for denial of fracking waste injection well, Hubbard Twp, Trumbull County, Ohio
In the seismically active NE Ohio fracking waste injection wells could induce earthquakes - permits must be revoked/denied.

letter condeming fracking waste injection well, Hubbard Twp, Trumbull County, Ohio
OH State Rep Glenn Holmes letter denouncing fracking waste injection wells in Ohio

meeting announced about fracking waste injection well, Hubbard Twp, Trumbull County, Ohio
Location of proposed fracking waste injection well, Hubbard Twp, Trumbull County, Ohio (200 feet from food manufacturing plant)

Friday, July 13, 2018

Youngstown citizens need at least 20 persons during next 3 weeks as volunteers 2-4 hours per week

Youngstown citizens need at least 20 persons during next 3 weeks as volunteers, 2-4 hours per week, getting Youngstown registered voter signatures on their citizen's ballot initiative to put into law protections for the drinking water, air and land!
Please call 234-201-0402 to volunteer or PM their @frackfreemahoning Page @ https://www.facebook.com/frackfreemahoning/
GOAL: 2000 signatures by the first week in August to get on the November 2018 ballot.
=======================
Ohio Supreme Court has ruled that this "Water Protection Bill of Rights" citizen's ballot initiative must be put on the ballot (once it obtains enough qualifying signatures).


Read the proposed amendment here:
http://www.protectyoungstown.org/
YES or NO vote: That the citizens of our community have a right to: 1. clean drinking water, free of toxic contaminants and MORE


Love Canal, NY, 1977 - present, school and homes built on chemical waste dump
 Love Canal story: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Love_Canal#Lois_Gibbs_and_the_Love_Canal_Homeowners'_Association
and good timeline:
http://www.niagara-gazette.com/news/local_news/headline-no-love-canal-timeline/article_a049cccd-77a1-5692-a824-706a200b927f.htm

Friday, May 4, 2018

Thank You Conscientious Reporters and Hard-Working Media Professionals Who Work to Fulfill the Duties of a Free Press By Protecting the Rights of Citizens Over Profits For Polluting Industries



Community Bill of Rights Committee                                         News Release
_______________________________________________________
For Immediate Release:  May 4, 2018
Contact:  Lynn Anderson:  Phone: 330-792-0428 or 234-201-0402 or email:  artistelynn@sbcglobal.net
Susie Beiersdorfer: Phone 330-881-1040 or email: yogayoungstown@gmail.com
 ______________________________________________________

Thank You Conscientious Reporters and Hard-Working Media Professionals Who Work to Fulfill the Duties of a Free Press By
Protecting the Rights of Citizens Over Profits For Polluting Industries

Youngstown, Ohio, May 4, 2018 – Members of the Youngstown Community Bill of Rights Committee released the following statement on May 4, 2018:

The Free Press is necessary for a democracy. We need the voice of our citizens to be heard, not drowned out. Money as speech has been the rule as multi-national corporations and government collude to make profits for the most wealthy.

Locally, in the dangerous situation we face, that of the disposal of cancer-causing toxic waste threatening the public health of the citizens of Youngstown, we urge you to cover the truth. Consider what will be your legacy- informing and warning the people, or helping to destroy the livable community. We encourage you to:

            • Please write about the facts regarding the past 6 elections where hundreds of thousands of dollars were spent in our elections, to guarantee that big polluters profit with impunity.
            • Serve the greater good of our people and our city as honest, trustworthy, unbiased, media that is not bought and paid for by polluting industry.
            • Help citizens understand that it is OUR RIGHT to petition our government when it is not protecting us. (Ohio Constitution Article 1 Sec. 2)

Now, more than ever before, the rights of people must be held above the rights of “corporate personhood.”

Facts:
1. Mahoning County Board of Elections used unconstitutional law HB 463 to keep the qualified citizens’ ballot initiative off the ballot, November 2017, resulting in voter suppression. They tried to do the same for the May 2018 ballot. The Ohio Supreme Court did not rule that the BOE was wrong to do this until April 24, 2018. Early voting had started weeks earlier, and over 1,000 ballots were already cast. ALL the extra fees, now for printing and mailing supplemental ballots have been a result of the actions of the Mahoning County Board of Elections.

2. Every election, campaign funds are contributed to electeds as they represent their donors and not the people they are elected to serve. Officials, union leaders, preachers, all have gotten enriched by the industry and told to repeat the industry propaganda- that we will get jobs. Currently, a SUPER PAC, “Restoring Ohio’s Values” is paying for robocalls made by Mayor Tito Brown, which repeat the same old lies, that Youngstown voters need to vote NO on this “Job-Killing” bill. Enough is Enough!


Why do we have to choose between jobs and clean water?
We can have clean water AND good jobs... Don’t settle for less.

Why Vote YES for the Youngstown Drinking Water Protection Bill of Rights?


Vote YES to Protect OUR Drinking Water because
without clean water there is no community.

Vote YES to Guarantee OUR water and sewer funds are used for water quality and infrastructure improvement, not abused by corrupt politicians and developers! Public monies should not be used for private business profits and our water pipes must be replaced to ensure clean drinking water, now and in the future.

Don’t let Youngstown become another Flint Michigan!

Youngstown Drinking Water Protection Bill of Rights
P.O Box 43 Youngstown, OH 44501

You can get more useful background information and history from our website:

       For media inquiries or more information, please contact the Community Bill of Rights Committee at: 
234-201-0402   or  e-mail:  frackfreemahoning@gmail.com


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