Delaware River Water Withdrawal Needs Public Input


America’s Most Endangered River of 2010, the Upper Delaware, continues to face significant challenges as natural gas development ramps up in the Marcellus Shale

The Delaware River Basin Commission (DRBC) plans to vote on a water withdrawal application by XTO Energy (ExxonMobil Corp.) for natural gas development in the Delaware River watershed at their regularly scheduled meeting May 11, 2011.  They have set a public hearing on the application at the 1:30 pm meeting, West Trenton Fire Company, 40 W. Upper Ferry Rd., West Trenton, N.J.

XTO Energy wants to take 250,000 gallons of water per day from Oquaga Creek, a trout stream that flows to the West Branch of the Delaware River, to frack natural gas wells.  The withdrawal site is on land owned by the Town of Sanford, which has given them access.  There is no permit required by NY State; the DRBC is the only review of this withdrawal. 

Approval of this application is wrong for many reasons including:

  1. It depletes the water supply for the Oquaga Creek and the Delaware River
  2. There is a moratorium on natural gas drilling in the Delaware River Watershed and on horizontal drilling/fracking in New York
  3. The public is shut out of the process and deserves a say in how their water is managed and used 

If you are in the area, please attend the DRBC May 11 Hearing, and tell DRBC to hold a Hearing in the Broome County area and extend the public comment period to at least 60 days.

If you can’t make it to the meeting, send a letter NOW to the DRBC by going to Delaware Riverkeeper Network’s website.

We only have a few days to speak up!