Friday, December 27, 2013

Fracking, Earthquakes, Water, & Local Government Control: Youngstown, Ohio & Niles, Ohio Area Concerned Citizens Seek to Affirm Local Self-Governance Rights to Protect Their Public Health, Safety, General Welfare, Property Values, and Private Property Rights

Fracking, Earthquakes, Water, and Local Government Control:  Youngstown, Ohio and Niles, Ohio Area Concerned Citizens Seek to Affirm Local Self-Governance Rights to Protect Their Public Health, Safety, General Welfare, Property Values, and Private Property Rights

For Immediate Release:  December 27, 2013
Community Bill of Rights Committee                           News Release

 Youngstown, Ohio, December 27, 2013 -  The Youngstown, Ohio Community Bill of Rights Committee said they would be back,  and they already are.

       Members of the committee and other local supporters of the Youngstown Community Bill of Rights Charter Amendment, which opposes fracking and upholds citizens’ fundamental right to local self governance and control, are going door to door in Youngstown with petitions seeking voter signatures to place a Community Bill of Rights Charter Amendment question on the Youngstown ballot in May, 2014. They have launched a new website at:     
      The group says the public is warmly welcoming them. The committee is very pleased that Niles, Ohio concerned citizens are also now collecting signatures for their similar petition effort that seeks to place a ballot question on the Niles ballot in May, 2014.  Niles concerned citizens launched a new website describing their effort to uphold their local rights and to ban fracking within Niles city limits at:     

      According to Susie Beiersdorfer, geologist and Youngstown Community Bill of Rights (CBR) Committee member,          “We now have a powerful base of almost 5000 Youngstown voters that could easily sway an election or ballot question. We will win this time because the truth resonates. We needed only 6 percent more YES votes to win on the ballot question in Youngstown on November, 2013. The gap is closing in our favor, and we soundly gained ground in November.  In the November, 2013 election, the opposition spent an exorbitant amount of money compared to what we spent.  In addition to the money, they also spent countless hours to oppose us, and we still gained ground. We are extremely happy about that. It shows the strength and truth of our position.”     

     The Youngstown grassroots, concerned citizens group says that despite massive spending by industry and pro-fracking allies to try to defeat them, the Community Bill of Rights Charter Amendment ballot question picked up 1830 more YES votes in their favor since the May 2013 election (May: 2912 YES votes; November: 4742 YES votes) and narrowed the margin from 13.71% to only 9.72 %.  More Youngstown voters supported the proposed Community Bill of Rights Charter Amendment in November than in May 2013.       

     “Our analysis of the election results is that as Youngstown voters are becoming more fully informed about fracking and local control issues, voters are turning against fracking, and are demanding local control over how they want their community to be – which is the citizens’ fundamental right.  We say the closing gap, which was 13.71 % in the May 2013 election and now is only 9.72%, is evidence of this growing sentiment,” said Lynn Anderson, a Youngstown Community Bill of Rights (CBR) Committee member.            

      Lynn Anderson also emphasizes that the margin is closing in the CBR committee's favor and that the committee soundly gained ground in November even though the CBR group spent only about half as much money as they did in their CBR May, 2013 campaign.  Lynn Anderson also says, "Youngstown citizens can visit the Mahoning County Board of Elections campaign finance website at  .   Type in Plumbers and add the final tally from the two 30-B-2 forms (October and December 2013) and see that the opposition spent over $81,000 against this ballot initiative. It is disgraceful that the opposition hired out of state ad agencies to formulate direct mail to confuse the issue in the public’s mind.”               

     The Youngstown Community Bill of Rights Committee says elections cannot be bought in America – even if the laws allow an unequal financial playing field. The group believes that, in general, it is un-American and immoral for outsiders to try to influence a local ballot question result by injecting massive amounts of advertising or lobbying money that greatly outspends the grassroots community. The public knows that is unfair. They see right through it.       
     The CBR group says that they are raising awareness of citizens’ and their official representatives’ local fundamental right and duty to protect the public health, safety, and general welfare of their communities. It is the 2004 Ohio state law, H.B. 278, that claims it can take away citizens’ local rights, that is unconstitutional. That state law is a bad law. The Community Bill of Rights Charter Amendment upholds American laws and values, and all citizens’ unalienable, natural, fundamental rights.       

     The group says that nearly every day – either in Ohio or in other states - another serious fracking related accident, evacuation, civil rights or human rights violation, or other event occurs that validates to the public that what the group has been saying is the truth.       

     For example, on December 19, 2013, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court issued an enormously significant court decision ruling that major parts of Pennsylvania’s shale drilling-related law, Act 13, were unconstitutional. The group believes that Act 13 is similar to the Ohio state drilling-related law, H.B. 278, which claims it can deprive local communities of certain fundamental rights.       

     The group believes that the outcome favoring local control in the  Pennsylvania Act 13 case is a preview of what is to come to Ohio’s similar law that erroneously says it can trump citizens’ civil, fundamental, and human rights to determine how they want their community to be and to protect their community’s health, safety, and welfare.  That Ohio law, they feel, will go the same way as the one in Pennsylvania – it will be ruled unconstitutional.          

     Please see “Pennsylvania Supreme Court declares portions of shale-drilling law unconstitutional,” a Pittsburgh Post-Gazette article by Don Hopey, December 20, 2013, at:       
     The group bases their information upon valid scientific reports, facts, and other accurate documentation. They say that politics, industry lobbying, and bureaucratic incompetence cannot be put above good science and the well-being of the community. The serious risks and adverse outcomes related to fracking and related processes are real. The public health, safety, and well-being must come first. The group says that to put profits over people is immoral and harmful to communities.       

Especially alarming to the Community Bill of Rights Committee and its supporters is that, locally or nationwide, heavy industrial fracking-related operations or infrastructure continue to be permitted near homes, children’s schools, farms, parks, forests, and cemeteries – in neighborhoods and residential areas.  Private property issues, such as forced pooling, occur. Real estate home property values can decrease as heavy fracking-related industrial operations are permitted near homes or residential areas.       
    The group is concerned about the plight and adverse health claims of those residents living near a heavy industrial fracking operation permitted by the state of Ohio in nearby Weathersfield Township.  Please see the following astonishing video that shows gas flaring and concerns of residents living near the fracking operation:
“Westwood Lake Nightmare” (published June 23, 2013)         

     The CBR Committee and supporters say that we, as a community, can learn a lot from other states’ experiences with fracking and related issues, including recent multiple earthquakes in Oklahoma and Texas. According to a KXAN – TV news report, North Texas had approximately twenty earthquakes in one month.  Please see KXAN news report titled, “20th earthquake in month reported in North Texas Latest happened about 20 miles NW of Fort Worth,” December 3, 2013, (includes new video and article) at: http://ww

     Some scientists feel that the latter earthquakes, and others, may be associated with deep fracking waste injection wells, like the one that caused the now-famous 4.0 magnitude earthquake in Youngstown, Ohio on December 31, 2011.  Scientists have linked Youngstown’s earthquakes to the D&L Northstar 1 injection well.      

     Group members say that the bottom line is that unconventional fracking continually creates millions of gallons of toxic fracking waste that has to go somewhere. There is no good, safe solution to this problem. Where will it all go?  Unfortunately, much of the waste currently goes to Ohio. Ohio is not a toxic fracking waste dumping ground. Ohioans are not expendable. No one anywhere is expendable.      

     In Ohio, an increasing number of toxic fracking waste injection wells are being permitted, built, or operated, such as the one in Weathersfield Township, Ohio, where local officials wisely oppose them. See “City of Niles sides with Weathersfield, opposes brine injection well plans,”, updated August 31, 2012 at:

     Even though local officials and some residents opposed the injection wells, the state of Ohio permitted one in their community anyway.  An injection well is now being built in Weathersfield Township. 

      The increasing number of permits issued by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) for yet more injection wells is despite the fact that Youngstown has already had at least 109 earthquakes, including the 4.0 magnitude earthquake on December 31, 2011 that scientists acknowledge was linked to the Youngstown D&L Northstar 1 injection well.      

     Furthermore, the group says, earthquakes cannot be regulated. It is reckless and irresponsible for anyone to pretend that earthquakes that could result from injection of fracking waste into deep injection wells can be regulated or kept small in magnitude.  Ohio is not the only state where local officials and residents have serious concerns and legitimate grievances about toxic fracking waste injection wells.       

     According to the Mayor of Azle, Texas, speaking of the almost 20 earthquakes in one month, as reported in Climate Progress, December 6, 2013: “’If it is determined that quakes are caused by the disposal wells, then the disposal wells need to stop. It’s that simple,’ the city of Azle’s Mayor Alan Brundrett said."        

     The latter quote and embedded link is from an article by Katie Valentine titled, “Researchers Link Earthquakes in Texas To Fracking Process,” at:
“It is especially disconcerting that residents in Prague, Oklahoma experienced a 5.6 magnitude earthquake that reputable scientists think may possibly be linked to deep disposal well injection of toxic fracking waste. An earthquake of this magnitude can cause human injury and collapsed buildings – especially in areas where earthquakes are not common and infrastructure is not reinforced to safeguard against earthquake damage. We already had 109 earthquakes in Youngstown, Ohio, including the 4.0 on December 31, 2011.  Human beings cannot regulate earthquakes to make sure that they stay small. This is especially true because the two faults under Youngstown have been destabilized. This is an irreversible effect of the D&L Northstar 1 injection-induced seismicity. We must stop injection wells now to help to prevent a possible 5.6 or greater magnitude quake, as well as smaller tremors,” said Dr. Ray Beiersdorfer, Professor of Geology at Youngstown State University.       

      Group members say that continuing on the path we are on regarding earthquakes and injection wells makes no common sense. The potential impact of frequent earthquakes, even smaller, under 3.0 magnitude quakes possibly linked to injection wells in any state, should not be minimized. This increased number of earthquakes is not normal.  We, as a society, should not and cannot become desensitized to this situation. The views of some people, whose incomes depend upon giving false reassurances to the public about the possible implications of the earthquakes, should be held to intense scrutiny, increased scientific inquiry, and open, public transparency. More media coverage would go a long way in raising general public awareness of these issues and would be a real community service.       
      It’s time for clear-thinking adults to intervene to legally stop this irrational quest by industry and a few others for a quick way to make money, while the majority of society suffers the costs. Those costs include financial, health- related, and costs to our democratic process. The public health, well-being, safety, drinking water, air, and fundamental rights must be the first consideration.       

     It has become extremely obvious that something needs to be done now about the increase in injection well-linked earthquakes that, alarmingly, are becoming more and more commonplace, according to reputable scientists and researchers. In fact, two United States Representatives, Representative Peter DeFazio and Representative Henry Waxman,  are wisely calling for hearings on the man-made earthquakes.  Their efforts to raise national awareness of the earthquake/injection well problem should be commended and supported locally and nationwide.

        According to The Oklahoman, Representative Peter DeFazio and Representative Henry Waxman said:  “… the two panels should hold a joint hearing to study the increase of seismic activity in areas that had previously been inactive and ‘the potential regulatory gaps in current law that put people and property at risk from man-made earthquakes.’”      

       The latter quote is from: “Democrats want hearing on whether earthquakes are linked to fracking: Citing research on Oklahoma earthquakes, two Democrats call on Republican committee leaders to look into unusual seismic activity,” by Chris Casteel, December 19, 2013, The Oklahoman:

      For an increasing number of reasons, including a shocking lack of public transparency on the part of ODNR, many members of the public have lost confidence in the ability of the state bureaucracy, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR), to competently protect the public health, safety, general well-being and private property rights of Ohioans.

       One reason for the loss of public confidence in ODNR is that football-field sized, open, toxic fracking waste centralized impoundment pits, or “lagoons,” which were reportedly banned in Ohio, have recently been permitted and are scheduled to make their appearance in Ohio by January 1, 2014.       

     See “Ohio will soon authorize fracking wastewater pools Football field-sized ponds to recycle waste,” by Jamison Cocklin, The Vindicator, October 6, 2013, at:

       These pits are still going forward despite apparent problems with impoundments in other states. To Frackfree Mahoning Valley’s knowledge, no one at ODNR fully adequately notified nor informed the general public of this plan – although they are supposed to be accountable to the public.  Nevertheless, plans for the football-sized fracking waste “lagoons” are still in place to proceed. This is unacceptable. The public has a right to be fully informed beforehand – not after the fact - and to have a legal say about issues that can directly impact or involve risks to their public health, safety, or general well-being. See the Frackfree Mahoning Valley press release dated October 14, 2013, at:       

       The group stresses that the oil and gas industry is not the only business in this area. The oil and gas industry does not deserve special treatment or law exemptions over all other businesses or human beings. We must be aware of possible adverse economic effects of heavy industrialization via fracking upon property values, upon the $43 billion per year Ohio tourist industry, and also upon agriculture, farming, and real estate businesses.       

     We must remain open to healthy family living in our communities, freedom to quiet enjoyment of private property rights, and healthy, ethical, and responsible businesses.   (According to a Vindicator AP article, tourism is the fourth-largest industry in Ohio “supporting 443,000 jobs” and $43 billion annually: See “Ohio House panel discusses attracting tourists,” September 10, 2013), AP:

       For media inquiries or more information, or to volunteer to help take petitions door to door to get voter signatures in Youngstown or Niles, please contact the petition committees via Frackfree Mahoning Valley at: 
234-201-0402   or  e-mail:

For more information please see the following links:    

People living near heavy industrial fracking operations talk about their experience: 
  “Westwood Lake Nightmare” (published June 23, 2013); Trumbull County, Ohio.

“Fracking hell: what it’s really like to live next to a shale gas well,” by Suzanne Goldenberg, The Guardian , article and video, December 13, 2013:  

More regarding Westwood Lake Park and fracking, etc. “Faith motivates Catholics to speak out on gas, oil drilling practices,” by Dennis Sadowski, Catholic News Service, posted December 12, 2013, Catholic Courier at:  

Earthquakes and fracking waste injection wells: 
(The Two - Year Anniversary of the Youngstown, Ohio Injection Well 4.0 magnitude Earthquake is December 31, 2013.)   “Experts Eye Oil and Gas Industry as Quakes Shake Oklahoma,” by Henry Fountain, The New York Times, December 12, 2013, [Youngstown, Ohio is in a caption in the video that goes along with this article.]:  

“Induced seismicity associated with fluid injection into a deep well in Youngstown, Ohio,” by Won-Young Kim, Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth, Volume 118, Issue 7, July 2013, Wiley Online Library:  

[Athens, Ohio]  “After earthquake, city council sides with county on halting use of injection wells,” December 3, 2013, by Cassie Kelly, The Post, at: 

  “Distant Earthquakes Trigger Tremors at U.S. Waste-Injection Sites, Says Study,” ScienceDaily, July 11, 2013:  

“Oil Addiction, Not Fracking, Caused the 2011 Oklahoma Earthquakes,” by David Biello, March 27, 2013, Scientific American Blogs, [Youngstown 4.0 mag. earthquake mentioned in video with article]    

  “…’There’s something important about getting unexpectedly large earthquakes out of small systems that we have discovered here,’ he said. The observations mean that ‘the risk of humans inducing large earthquakes from even small injection activities is probably higher’ than previously thought, he said.” [Excerpt from:] “Wastewater Injection Spurred Biggest Earthquake Yet, Says Study March 26, 2013  2011 Oklahoma Temblor Came Amid Increased Manmade Seismicity,” Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Columbia University, Earth Institute at:

  “In Oklahoma, water, fracking – and a swarm of quakes,” by Carey Gillam, November 19, 2013, Reuters at:   

“Mineral Wells quake follows another temblor near Azle,” by Barry Shlachter, December 9, 2013, Star-Telegram; [includes list of some area earthquakes:]   

“Residents in Azle told CBS 11 News that they are concerned about the rising number of earthquakes rocking the area.” [Excerpt from:] “Earthquake Strikes North Texas Saturday Night,”, December 15, 2013,  

“Officials with the Ohio Department of Natural Resources would not go on camera for this report, but they responded to questions about the issue.” [Excerpt from:]  “Ohio dumping ground for fracking waste?” November 8, 2013, WKBN-TV 27 First News:  

“Since oil and gas drillers are exempt from key provisions of federal hazardous waste law, they are also exempt from the earthquake prevention rules when they inject wastewater from hydraulic fracturing.”        [Excerpt from:] “Earthquakes: Drilling waste wells exempt from earthquake testing rules,” by Mike Soraghan, E & E Publishing, LLC., March 22, 2012: 

“A commission spokeswoman said inspectors visited one of the disposal wells in the area and found it in compliance with agency rules. But agency rules don't address earthquakes.” [Excerpt from:] “Earthquakes: Texas agency doubtful as it investigates link to drilling-waste injection,” by Mike Soraghan, E & E Publishing, LLC., December 18, 2013: 

“Yet another earthquake, the 30th since November 1, rattles Azle Monday morning,” by Robert Wilonsky, The Scoop Blog, Dallasnews, December 23, 2013: 

“Along with the cracks, the nail heads appear to be popping out of the sheet rock, and Kim believes the quakes feel stronger upstairs, hence the cracks in the walls.” [Excerpt from:] “More earthquakes hit near Azle,” updated December 23, 2013, by James Rose, KDFW Fox 4, [Includes news video and article]: 

“Continued Shaking Has Texans Considering Earthquake Insurance,” December 23, 2013, by Bud Gillett, CBS 11 News, 

Scientific American’s Top 10 Science Stories of 2013,” by The Editors, December 19, 2013, Scientific American [see Number 7: “Confirmed: Fracking and Related Operations Cause Earthquakes,”]     

“Fracking firm Cuadrilla pulls out of Lancashire ‘quake’ site,” BBC News Lancashire, December 17, 2013:      

See election results here:  Mahoning County Board of Elections: November, 2013 election results: See May 7 election results here:  

Additional Important Information:
[Video with English subtitles:]
“Pope Francis unmissable interview by film director Fernando E. Solanas, Cinesur, SA, YouTube, “Published on Dec 13, 2013
Multi award winning film director and argentinian senator Fernando E. Solanas made this amazing interview where Pope Francis talks about environment contamination unemployment and culture. Please help us. Sign in “  at:
Pope Francis interview video In Spanish without subtitles, “Imperdible entrevista al Papa Francisco por Pino Solanas,” Cinesur SA, “published on November 27, 2013,   is at: 

“Debate over fracking,” “…series of stories from Catholic News Service …” Catholic Courier, posted December 11, 2013, Updated: December 18, 2013 at:    

“Straight talk – Pennsylvanians speak out to Governor Corbett about fra …” Delaware Riverkeeper Network: YoTube video, January 9, 2013:  

[The Texas Tribune] “Fort Worth Sues Driller, Citing Millions in Lost Royalties,” by Jim Malewitz, published December 21, 2013, The New York Times    

For media inquiries or more information, or to volunteer to help the local efforts, please contact the group via Frackfree Mahoning Valley at:  234-201-0402  
or  e-mail:  
                                                                                    # # #

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Stupendous Bake Sale Today - Food, Friends, Fundraiser for Community Bill of Rights Youngstown & NIles, Ohio

Stupendous Bake Sale Today - Food and Friends and fundraiser - baked goods & candy for sale to put the Community Bill Of Rights issue back on the ballot. Please support and enjoy some brownies, breads, cookies, pizzelles, pie, candies.
In basement of First Unitarian Universalist Church of Youngstown (UUYO)
across from Wick Park at

1105 Elm St. (Elm & Illinois)
Youngstown, Ohio 44505 Today 9:30 am - 1:00 pm

1105 Elm St. (Elm & Illinois)
Youngstown, Ohio 44505 Today 9:30 am - 1:00 pm
5150 Youngstown Warren Rd, Niles, OH 44446 1pm -6pm

Northside Farmer's Market is also running until 1pm

Baked goods will be available after 1pm at Treasures Flea Market, 5150 Youngstown Warren Rd, Niles, OH 44446  Come stop by, sign the Niles ballot issue petition (READ MORE) and get some yummy baked goods - our table is against the far back wall - see you there - come watch our videos!

Monday, November 25, 2013

Two Arrested Protesting Fracking Wastewater Injection Well

Sunday, November 24, 2013. Niles, Ohio
Two Youngstown, OH community members were arrested today at a nonviolent protest and rally at a fracking wastewater injection well site in Niles, OH. The two protesters were arrested for blocking trucks from entering the well site while holding a “Fracking Hurts Communities” banner. More than 50 people from Ohio and Pennsylvania attended the rally.
“The state of Ohio has refused to protect its communities from fracking,” said Chris Khumprakob, who was arrested during the protest. ”Hydraulic fracturing is poisoning our community and endangering our health, so we’ve come together today as a community to symbolically cleanse our water and take a stand for our health. The state government won’t protect our well-being, so we’ve decided to protect it ourselves.”

Despite the harmful effects of injection wells, including poor air quality and contaminated drinking water, the state of Ohio has so far sided with fracking companies, according to members of FrackFree Mahoning Valley.
Fracking wastewater injection wells have been linked to many earthquakes, including a magnitude 4.0 earthquake in Youngstown on New Year’s Eve in 2011 and more than 11 subsequent earthquakes since the placement of injection wells in the area. Last year, Weathersfield Township and the City of Niles banned injection wells, but the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) still permitted this well. According to Ohio Revised Code, the ODNR has “sole and exclusive authority” to permit drilling operations in the state, regardless of what is agreed upon at the local municipal level.

“The Weathersfield Township trustees and Niles city council are attempting to protect the health and safety of our residents by banning injection wells, but the state of Ohio won’t listen to them,” said John Williams, a McDonald, OH resident that was arrested at the protest.

“This is just another example of the state government choosing corporate wealth over community health. We stand together with our city council to say that we do not want this toxic trespasser put in place.”
While Williams and Khumprakob blockaded the road leading to the well site, the rest of the protesters participated in a water blessing led by Reverend Monica Beasley-Martin.

“Clean water is essential for mankind’s continued survival,” said Rev. Beasley-Martin. ”Like the Prophet Jeremiah before me, there is a burning fire, shut up in my bones, that compels me to speak out against this planned destruction of our water supply. We are not expendable!” 

The residents of Niles do not stand alone in their efforts to ban fracking. Today’s event is just one example of a broad-based movement sweeping across Ohio and many other parts of America. Legislation has been introduced in the Ohio House of Representatives to ban fracking wastewater underground injection wells [see ] until Jan. 1, 2015.

Help support the brave blockaders who put their bodies on the line defending their right to clean air and water. You can donate to help them pay the legal fees accrued from their arrests here )


photo: Daniel Goering

photo: Jean Engle

photo: Monica Beasley-Martin


Airborne volatile organic chemicals such as benzene, toluene, ethyl benzene and xylene will evaporate into the air, to be carried downwind into our neighborhoods and schoolyards. The Nicholson Center for the mentally challenged is less than a quarter mile downwind. The new Niles Middle School is less than 1/2 mile downwind. Our neighborhoods are across the street. We stand in clear opposition of this irresponsible toxic trespass.


Friday, November 1, 2013

54 Reasons Why Youngstown OH Voters Will VOTE YES Nov 5 FOR Ban on Fracking

54 Reasons Why Youngstown OH Voters Will VOTE YES Nov 5 FOR Ban on Fracking

 (If video doesn't play below go to link  )

YES to good jobs, YES to clean air,
YES to clean water,
YES for the residents of Youngstown to decide their future.
YES to the Community Bill of Rights.
People of Youngstown should be the ones deciding if they want drilling in their neighborhoods and community.
People of Youngstown should be the ones deciding if the environmental and health risks are worth taking.
People of Youngstown should have a voice in decision if their property values are going to be affected.
VOTE YES on Youngstown Community Bill of Rights on Nov 5 = FOR fracking ban = NO fracking in Youngstown!

READ the parts of the federal environmental protection laws that natural gas drilling and fracking are exempt from HERE

 23 More Reasons To VOTE YES! NOv 5th, FOR Youngstown fracking ban
(If videos do not play below go to link

Monday, October 14, 2013


Youngstown, Ohio, October 14, 2013  –   Frackfree Mahoning Valley (FFM) calls for an immediate halt to plans that Ohio state regulators are reportedly implementing by January 1 to use open pits or impoundments for toxic fracking waste.

Additionally, Frackfree Mahoning Valley calls for immediate transparency and increased public and media scrutiny regarding open, exposed, fracking waste pits or impoundments planned for Ohio.

According to a Vindicator article (10/6/13) by Jamison Cocklin titled, “Ohio will soon authorize fracking wastewater pools: Football field-sized ponds to recycle waste.”:  

“Fracking waste includes salt, dissolved solids and light radioactive and toxic metals from its contact with underground rocks.  Chemicals added to the mixture contain volatile organic compounds, such as benzene and toulene.” [sic]

Furthermore, a WFMJ – TV 21 news report (October 6, 2013) quoted Ohio State Representative Robert Hagan regarding the centralized impoundments. In the news report, State Representative Hagan said:

“The regulations were supposed to go through our committees and instead it goes through the budget and then it goes right through the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. They’re  making the decisions regardless or irregardless of what we think.”  (WFMJ – TV news report – 10/6/13)

Frackfree Mahoning Valley asks why the general public and some officials, reportedly, have not been given adequate information or proper protocol by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) in the first place before they decided to permit a previously “banned” procedure, using the word reported in the Vindicator article (10/6/13).

The position of concerned citizens of Frackfree Mahoning Valley is that unconventional horizontal fracking cannot be done safely with the technology as it stands today, and therefore, must be stopped to protect the public’s health, safety, and well-being.  Stopping this now is the real solution to the impoundment issue and other fracking – related public health and safety issues, as well as issues related to private property, loss of property value, or other adverse effects upon residents’ quality of life.

FFM believes that this idea to implement centralized impoundments is disturbing. FFM asks why there was not a more transparent public protocol regarding these plans by Ohio regulators? This has the appearance of someone trying to hide something or perhaps ignoring the legitimate health and safety concerns of the public.

The proposed use of open pit fracking waste impoundments should be a concern for pro-fracking advocates or landowners as well as anti-fracking advocates since this is an important public health and safety issue with the potential to affect the general public health and well-being. 

It is not fair that the oil and gas industry and a relatively few individuals profit monetarily while too many everyday citizens suffer the adverse effects of shale gas development. Ohio residents are not expendable. Ohio is not a sacrifice zone nor is Ohio a dumping ground for toxic fracking waste.

According to FFM, Ohio, or any state for that matter, should not be a primary waste injection area or exposed impoundment area for the disposal or storage of millions of gallons of toxic fracking waste that continues to be produced by an increasing number of fracking industrial operations. The real solution to the “dumping ground” problem is to stop the production of massive amounts of toxic fracking waste since there is no good solution for where all of this toxic waste should go.

Frackfree Mahoning Valley encourages Ohio to learn from Pennsylvania’s or West Virginia’s experience with open pit fracking waste impoundments. State and local representatives must do proper due diligence regarding these proposed fracking waste pits.

FFM is now looking into information regarding open fracking waste impoundments pits.  FFM says it would be happy to help facilitate interviews with appropriate groups or individuals who could provide accurate information about this topic.

The group says that based upon what it has been learning, so far, this is not a good development for Ohio, and it must stop now. Now is the time for concerned Ohio citizens to work to prevent this from coming into their areas and to work for in-depth, open public hearings on this issue where the public can speak freely about its demands regarding fracking waste impoundments. Shining the light of public scrutiny on these plans by ODNR is crucial. The public deserves to be heard and to have their say on this issue.

There seems to be little, detailed, readily accessible information specifically about the impoundments that ODNR is planning for Ohio.  Therefore, the impoundment information cited below may or may not be the kind of open pit planned for Ohio.  Nevertheless, it does provide information on some of the residents’ real life experience with some PA impoundments.

FFM says it does not want to find our local Ohio communities in a similar situation as that depicted in the following 2010 video, which may or may not be about the kind of fracking waste pit impoundments planned for Ohio. (We also hear that corrections had been made in an effort to remedy the issue in the following video.) 

Especially hear testimony starting at 4 minutes 10 seconds:

The caption for a Youtube video published on September 28, 2013 says: “Special Mount Pleasant Township, Pa supervisors' meeting on 4 impoundments for shale drilling fluids.” 
(Especially see testimony beginning at minute 44 and 01 seconds):

An article by Pittsburgh Tribune-Review staff reporter, Jason Cato, titled “Mt. Pleasant officials postpone decision on drilling water storage pits,” (October 8, 2013) can be found at:

Here is another article from the Pittsburgh Tribune- Review by Timothy Puko, August 31, 2013, “Risky gas drilling waste pits anger Mt. Pleasant neighbors”:

Frackfree Mahoning Valley says that too many questions regarding the proposed open fracking waste pits remain unanswered.  For example, does ODNR plan to permit these impoundments near homes, farms, schools, or residential areas?  What exactly is in this fracking waste that is exposed? Will ODNR permit the impoundments to be placed in flood plains?  Plastic liners to prevent leakage of toxic fracking waste do not sound secure or safe to FFM. What have other states experienced regarding leakage or contamination? Does ODNR really believe that plastic liners can prevent leaks or contamination, and, if so, where is the scientific proof and documentation of this?  Does ODNR have any plans to allow permits for converting freshwater impoundments to fracking waste “flowback” impoundments?

Furthermore, what adverse effects might the use of these open fracking waste impoundments have on the multi-billion dollar tourism industry in Ohio?  Shale gas and oil is not the only industry in Ohio.

(According to a Vindicator AP article, tourism is the fourth-largest industry in Ohio “supporting 443,000 jobs” and $43 billion annually: See “Ohio House panel discusses attracting tourists,” September 10, 2013), AP

The public has a right to ready access to all available independent, accurate, scientific and public health and safety information regarding the use of open pit impoundments. The public, first responders, and local officials have a right to know what is being planned by the state for their local communities. FFM says the plan to permit a previously “banned” procedure must stop in the best interests of the public.

Please see the very important AP article that was posted on the WFMJ-TV website titled, “Ohio drilling chemicals must be reported locally,” September 30, 2013.

Frackfree Mahoning Valley renews its call for public, open, televised or otherwise broadcast conversation with anti-fracking and pro-fracking advocates in real time. The public deserves to know the full picture regarding fracking, fracking related processes, and infrastructure.

To see a picture of one of these impoundment “lagoons” and a news article titled, “Big lagoons could hold Ohio fracking waste,” by Spencer Hunt, The Columbus Dispatch (October 11, 2013) visit:

For more information please visit:  and

or please call Frackfree Mahoning Valley at:

234-201-0402   or e-mail FFM at:

                                                            # # #

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Triple Divide Screening September 22, 6 PM Youngstown Ohio - Free - Touring Ohio - 10 Stops

"It's hard to imagine anyone could have a fully-informed opinion about fracking without seeing Triple Divide," Jed Thorp, OH Sierra Club Ohio Chapter Narrated with help from actor & advocate Mark Ruffalo, Triple Divide is Public Herald's first investigations into inevitable, negative impacts from shale gas industrial development and how those impacts are handled by the state, specifically the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP).

B & O Station and Brewery, 530 Mahoning Avenue, Youngstown, Ohio 44502
FILM starts 6 PM with directors!  


Major findings include stark negligence and endangerment of public and environmental health due to shale gas extraction. Through personal stories, expert interviews, and investigation of state case files, Triple Divide tells a cautionary tale about the corruption of a public agency meant to regulate industry and protect the public and environment.

Though extraction of shale gas will one day end, taking many 'boom and bust' jobs with it, contaminated groundwater aquifers, polluted land, and stories of victimization will remain. But some Pennsylvanians, fed up with corruption and destruction, won't 'go down' without a fight.

Read more about the film:

Facebook Event:

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

We Will Not Stop Until You Listen. We Will Not Let You Frack Up Our Land - The People Are Gonna Take A Stand.

Listen to complete We Will Not Stop song and other Jonathan Blackshire music at

The lyrics are important:
We Will Not Stop (Occupation Songs) by Jonathan Blackshire. (All songs off of Occupation Songs are available for free download, though you can still support Mr. Blackshire by buying them from his store.)

Chorus: We will not stop until you listen.
We will not let you frack up our land.
If you keep putting profits before people,
Then the people are gonna take a stand.

You tried to tell us it was safe.
But, now we know that was a lie.
When people started getting sick,
And they found out they could light their water on fire.
But, when you talked to the SEC.
You told a very different tale.
You said that there were many risks,
Including blowouts, cratering, explosions, and spills.
~Chorus ~
I won't mention the damaged forests.
Don't need to talk about air pollution.
Not going to talk about your pipelines,
Or mention 6 million dollars in campaign contributions.
No, the worst is what you've done to our water.
Because we can't drink your money.
Contaminated with Radium, Barium, Strontium, Benzene, and Toluene.
~Chorus ~
What was it you said to Crystal Stroud,
When she started to lose her hair?
When she had trouble breathing,
You said it wasn't caused by your drilling there.
And what about Mr Terry Greenwood,
When half his calves were dead at birth.
Because his cattle drank from his pond,
That had the chemicals you let leech into the earth.
~Chorus x2~ then repeat last line twice.
(thanks also to Prof. Bob Myers' audio visual presentation at Youngstown's 4th Annual Grey To Green Festival for inspiration for some of the lyrics)

NILES, OHIO City Council, Residents Work To Ensure Fracking Ban in Their City and Protect Their Families From Toxic Wastes In Air, Water, Work:

Niles, Ohio,  City Council CONTACTS :

Youngstown Community Bill of Rights-Vote YES on Nov 5, 2013
Protect Our Families' Drinking Water From Toxic Fracking Waste 

ALSO SEE: "Will there be blood on your hands?" Reverend asks Youngstown City Council for Fracking ban at:

ALSO SEE: (soundtrack is We Will Not Stop .)

Find other concerned citizens at:
contact at 330-201-0402 or


Monday, September 9, 2013

Niles, Ohio City Council - Discussion on Rescinding Fracking Ban Sept.9

Niles, Ohio City Council - Discussion on Rescinding Fracking Ban
MONDAY, September 9, 1pm – 2pm34 W State St SE, Niles, OH 44446 (map),+Niles,+OH+44446&source=calendar
Monday’s 1 p.m. public meeting will be in a conference room at City Hall. No legislation will be passed there. council.htm 34 W State St SE, Niles, OH 44446 where the Mayor's Office is.
NOT the Police Station place Safety-Service Complex, NOT 15 E. State St., Niles, OH 44446

Mayor's Office  330-544-9000 Ext. 150
Phone:(330) 652-3415

Vote YES! Nov. 5, 2013 Youngstown Community Bill of Rights
VOTE YES to protect your family's safe drinking water on Tuesday, Nov. 5th, 2013, to amend the Youngstown Home Rule Charter so that the citizens can protect their drinking water, their air and their land. READ MORE:

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Something Is Dreadfully Wrong - Yet Their Suffering Goes Unheeded: As Goes Ohio, So Goes The Nation

Westwood Lake Park, Trumbull County, Ohio

Westwood Lake Park, Trumbull County, Ohio has been put thru hell. Below is the well in the flaring stage and is what a flare looks like when the well contains wet gas.

 VIDEO 1: and embedded below

Video 2:   and embedded below.

Help assist with Community Bill Of Rights HERE: VOTE YES to protect your family's safe drinking water on Tuesday, Nov. 5th, 2013, to amend the Youngstown Home Rule Charter so that the citizens can protect their drinking water, their air and their land. READ MORE:

and on facebook at:

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Youngstown Earthquake Tremors, Voter Suppression, Toxic Fracking Wastewater To Be Discussed Sept. 5, 2013 Youngstown, Ohio

Background on the challenge to placing issue on the ballot:


EVENT on Facebook:
Youngstown, Ohio, September 4, 2013  –  Especially in light of the newly released 109 Youngstown earthquake tremors study and other recent developments, the September 5th open public townhall style meeting organized by members of the Youngstown Community Bill of Rights Committee and Frackfree Mahoning Valley, a group of concerned citizens who oppose fracking and related processes, will be a very important one. 

All members of the media are invited to please attend the townhall, which will take place at The First Unitarian Universalist Church of Youngstown, located at 1105 Elm St., Youngstown, Ohio (Elm & Illinois) on Thursday, September 5, 2013 at 7 PM to 9 PM. 

“The newly released scientific study of the 109 Youngstown earthquakes and other fracking related events further corroborate our position that fracking cannot be done safely with the technology as it stands today.  In addition, the fact that heavy industrial fracking operations are being permitted near homes, children’s schools, farms, parks, forests, or cemeteries provides overwhelming evidence that this needs to stop now in order to protect the public health, safety, well-being, and also private property rights and property values,” said Susie Beiersdorfer.

The group says that this second townhall meeting is designed to help inform the public of all aspects of fracking, injection wells, and other related processes. The group will show some compelling, brief informational films at the beginning, make a statement, and will open up the floor to public or media questions, comments, feedback, or concerns. They also welcome local and state officials to attend the townhall.

To see a flyer for the September 5th townhall, please visit:
For media inquiries or more information, please contact the group via Frackfree Mahoning Valley at: 
234-201-0402   or  e-mail:
Text from a flyer that the group is distributing appears below:
You are invited to an open public Townhall style meeting: Thursday, September 5, 2013 in Youngstown
Are you concerned about fracking earthquakes, safe drinking water issues, pollution, gas flaring, or other fracking-related shale drilling concerns?  Do you want to know more about:
-- Toxic fracking waste injection wells?
-- Private property or property value concerns?  
-- Protecting Mill Creek Park?
Want to learn more about the Youngstown Community Bill of Rights Charter Amendment, your right to local self-governance, and how, on Friday Sept. 6th, 2013 there is a hearing concerning doing away with this right? Would you like to learn about what you can do to protect your community and your family?
Please come to this ”open to the public” forum where we invite you to share your concerns, ask questions, or provide information and feedback – or, if you prefer, just listen and watch the brief informational films and important discussion to follow.
Please come to The First Unitarian Universalist Church of Youngstown, located at 1105 Elm St., Youngstown, Ohio (Elm & Illinois) on Thursday, September 5, 2013 at 7 PM to 9 PM.
Together we can find positive solutions to help our neighborhoods thrive.  Please attend and bring a friend!  Thanks in advance.
For more information, please contact us via Frackfree Mahoning Valley at:  Phone: 234-201-0402   or  e-mail:    For general info see:
[This informational meeting is organized by the Youngstown Community Bill of Rights Committee and concerned citizens of Frackfree Mahoning Valley.]


You are invited to an open PUBLIC MEETING at the Board of Elections, 345 Oak Hill Ave. 5pm Friday, September 6, 2013 in Youngstown
The citizens of Youngstown signed petitions to place a ballot initiative, The Community Bill of Rights on the November 5, 2013 ballot:
-- to protect our drinking water,
-- to protect our breathable air,  
-- to protect our homes from earthquakes,
no matter what businesses come to Youngstown.
Citizens worked hard to get this issue on the ballot enabling each person to vote for or against local self-governance in order to protect the community.
Now a coalition has filed a protest to keep this important issue off the ballot. Please come to this “open to the public” meeting.
Please come to The Board of Elections on the first floor of the Oakhill Renaissance Center, located at 345 Oak Hill Avenue, Youngstown, Ohio  on Friday, September 6, 2013 at 5PM.
The legal counsel for the Youngstown Community Bill of Rights will defend the citizens’ right to vote.  Please attend and bring a friend!  Thanks in advance.
For more information, please contact us via Frackfree Mahoning Valley at:  Phone: 234-201-0402   or  e-mail:    For general info see:  
[This informational meeting is organized by the Youngstown Community Bill of Rights Committee and concerned citizens of Frackfree Mahoning Valley.]