News | April 8, 2013

Forest Service Expected to Issue Decision on GW Fracking This Spring

In the late spring of 2013, the U.S. Forest Service is expected to release the long-term management plan for the George Washington National Forest, at last revealing whether the agency will try to open up these public lands to horizontal gas drilling and high-volume fracking, the riskiest and most destructive form of fracking. The Forest Service originally proposed to prohibit horizontal gas drilling on any future federal oil and gas leases in the GW, but due to pressure from the gas industry and other drilling proponents the Forest Service has been reconsidering. 

SELC and its partners have urged the Forest Service to maintain the sensible approach of prohibiting horizontal gas drilling for the current plan, as have several local governments in or surrounding the GW, two public water suppliers, agencies such as the Environmental Protection Agency and National Park Service, and over 50,000 individuals that submitted comments to the Forest Service in support of the proposed restrictions.

Download the Fracking the George Washington National Forest handout (pdf)