WV SORO Update Archive

August 27, 2012

Wellness & Water Conference: Health Impacts of Fossil Fuel Extraction 
sponsored by our allies the Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition (OVEC), Sierra Club (WV Chapter) and WV Highlands Conservancy

With a range of workshops and panels, hear about the human health impacts of mountaintop removal coal mining and shale gas drilling and fracking. Meet with impacted residents and experts including: keynote speaker, environmental scientist Dr. Wilma Subra (see Wilma's bio below); Dr. Ben Stout, Aquatic Biologist at Wheeling Jesuit University; Dr. Jill Kriesky, Senior Project Coordinator for the Center for Healthy Environments and Communities at the University of Pittsburgh; and Dr. Michael Hendryx, Research Director for the West Virginia University Institute for Health Policy, whose research is shining a much-needed light on these health impacts.

WHEN: September 8, 2012

WHERE: First Presbyterian Church, 456 Spruce Street, Morgantown, WV (map at http://www.firstpresmorgantown.org/maps.html)

—Register now online at www.ohvec.org

—Day-of registration begins at 8:00 a.m. Coffee and tea available.

—Keynote at 9:00 a.m.

—Closing reception at 1:00 p.m. Finger food available.

$10 suggested donation to help with the cost of the program and snacks.

About the Keynote Speaker — Wilma Subra
Wilma graduated from the University of Southwestern Louisiana and the University of Louisiana at Lafayette in Microbiology, Chemistry and Computer Sciences. Committed to protecting the environment and the health and safety of citizens, in 1981 Wilma started Subra Company, a chemistry lab and environmental consulting firm in New Iberia, LA. Wilma worked for the Gulf South Research Institute and served as vice-chair of the EPA National Advisory Council for Environmental Policy and Technology. Wilma serves on the boards of Earthworks and STRONGER (State Review of Oil and Gas Environmental Regulations) and was featured in the documentary film Gasland. She has received numerous awards and recognitions, including the MacArthur Foundation's Fellowship "Genius Award" for helping citizens understand, cope with and combat environmental issues in their communities.

CONTACT: Robin Blakeman at robin@ohvec.org or 304-522-0246 for more information. (Click here to view/download flyer)

WV-SORO Members Participate in Stop the Frack Attack in Washington, DC
Community members and organizations from across the country gathered in Washington, DC on July 28 for a rally at the Capitol to demand greater government responsibility and corporate accountability for the harm that existing oil and gas development causes, starting with the removal of special exemptions and subsidies for the oil and gas industry.

In addition to the Saturday rally and march, the week's events included a lobby day on Capitol Hill, as well as trainings, strategy sessions and a town hall style meeting. 

On Thursday, 140 citizens lobbied members Congress.  More than 250 people attended the National Gathering on Friday to talk strategy and share their stories.  Saturday's rally at the US Capitol and march to America's Natural Gas Alliance and American Petroleum Institute was 5,000 strong. Although folks from West Virginia turned out for all of the events, we had the biggest showing at the rally and march.  The WV Chapter of the Sierra Club chartered a bus to the event.  Nearly 50 people rode the bus, including members of WV-SORO.

(Left to Right) Julie Archer with Fiona Druge of Morgantown, Letty Butcher of Independence, Rick Humphreys and his daughter Kelly of Mannington. Fiona was a summer intern with Oil Change International (http://priceofoil.org/). Letty and Rick are members of WV-SORO.  Kelly was a youth speaker and WV representative at the rally.  You can watch Kelly’s speech our YouTube Channel, www.youtube.com/user/wvsoro.

Representatives Diana DeGette (D-Colorado), Maurice Hinchey (D-New York) and Jared Polis (D-Colorado) addressed activists that attended Thursday's lobby day.  Friday's town hall speakers included author and environmentalist Bill McKibben, Gasland director Josh Fox and citizens from across the country whose communities are affected by fracking.  McKibben and Fox also spoke at Saturday's rally along with Kari Matsko (OH), Mike Tidwell (MD), Laura Amos (CO), John Fenton (WY), Dayne Praztky (Australia), Jameson Lisak (PA), Kelly Humphreys (WV), Calvin Tillman (TX), Lori New Breast (Blackfoot Confederacy) and Doug Shields (PA).  Dr. Catherine Thomasson of Physicians for Social Responsibility and Allison Chin of the Sierra Club also addressed the crowed.  Jen Krill and Gwen Lachelt with Earthworks served as MCs for the event.

Julie Archer and WV-SORO member Rick Humphreys represented WV on the national advisory committee.

The rally and march were covered by WBOY-TV in Clarksburg (links available at www.wvsoro.org) and we have posted videos of some of the speakers at www.youtube.com/user/wvsoro

More information at stopthefrackattack.org.

West Virginia Surface Owners' Rights Organization
1500 Dixie Street, Charleston, West Virginia 25311