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Kucinich wants to eliminate oil and gas drilling in Ohio

Kucinich wants to eliminate oil and gas drilling in Ohio

Dennis Kucinich promised a “major announcement” today in Columbus, and he delivered a promised moratorium on fracking and outright ban on injection wells if he is elected Ohio governor.

Kucinich told reporters his goal is to eliminate all oil and gas wells — not just those from fracking, or hydraulic fracturing — in Ohio by the end of his four-year term.
“We’re talking about a brand new day here in Ohio,” he said at a press conference on Capital Square.

The former congressman and Cleveland mayor said such a radical move is necessary to protect the state’s most precious resource: its water.
Under his sweeping plan, Kucinich would order the State Highway Patrol to stop and inspect all trucks hauling fracking waste for disposal in Ohio, and turn them back.
He would order free public health screenings for all Ohioans living close to or downstream from fracking sites.

And Kucinich would assemble a panel of physicians, scientists and economists to gather data on the impact of fracking and injection wells on Ohio and file a class-action suit against drilling companies and others responsible for pollution and contamination.

“Those who have poisoned Ohio’s people and their land will be made to pay,” he said.

“Ohio taxpayers are facing a future of billions of dollars of debt and destruction as a result of the virtually unregulated nature of this industry. As Ohio’s governor, I will end the corrupt influence of these interests in the state capital.

“No longer will Ohio be the designated dumping ground for frack waste from here and other states with unregulated processing facilities operating for private profit at public expense.”

Kucinich would use state’s power of eminent domain to acquire existing drilling sites, settle royalties, close the wells and assess severance fee on companies.

“We will empower the people of Ohio who have been abused, victimized and lied to,” Kucinich said. “I intend to create real economic opportunities for the people of fracked Ohio, especially southeast Ohio, so they will no longer be vulnerable to those who exploit their poverty with poisoned jobs.”

His running mate, Akron Councilwoman Tara Samples, said, “This is about environmental justice and poor people being taken advantage of.”

Kucinich said he and his wife have worked to support native Americans in their challenge of the Keystone Pipeline at Standing Rock, N.D., and aided communities in the Hudson River valley in New York challenge a fracking facility.

He cited a study showing that the water needed for fracking exceeds 85 percent of residential demand in several Ohio counties, which can lead to groundwater contamination. And drilling companies won’t share the proprietary chemicals injected deep underground; Kucinich said all anybody knows is “they are toxic and carcinogenic.”

He called it “well known” that fracking and deep-well injection have caused more than 100 earthquakes in Ohio.

“Why was Ohio made into a sacrifice zone as the designated dumping ground for hazardous waste, especially frack waste from other states who don’t want it?” he asked in a series of questions.
“How can this one industry have the political clout to virtually take over state government, to use our water and destroy it forever for others and only pay pennies on the gallon for this destruction?”

Kucinich also said while his political stance is generally regarded as leftist, especially in the current five-person Democratic field, “This ticket is poised right at the center of the aspirations of the people of Ohio.”

He also said, “I’m the candidate who can reach out to the Trump voters and say come on back to the Democratic Party.”

SOURCE: Columbus Dispatch

1/25/2018

BY:  D Rowland
drowland@dispatch.com
@darreldrowland

LINK: http://www.dispatch.com/news/20180125/kucinich-wants-to-eliminate-oil-and-gas-drilling-in-ohio

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