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Stop Illinois' dangerous fracking rules

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    Stop Illinois' dangerous fracking rules

    Earlier this year, the Illinois legislature passed a dangerous, industry-backed law green-lighting fracking in Illinois.

    Now, the state has issued draft fracking regulations that would represent a big step toward kicking off a devastating expansion of fracking. Once the rules are finalized, the industry will be able to begin applying for permits and fracking Illinois.1

    The state is accepting public comments through January 3. We need to flood the Illinois Department of Natural Resources with public comments calling on it to scrap the regulations and ban fracking.

    Tell the Illinois Department of Natural Resources: Scrap your dangerous pro-fracking regulations and ban fracking.

    Illinois' Hydraulic Fracturing Regulatory Act, which Governor Quinn signed in June, was passed over the objections of grassroots activists, after being negotiated behind closed doors by lawmakers, industry and a handful of misguided environmental groups that backed the legislation.2 3

    But the recently proposed regulations are so weak, even the groups that originally backed the Hydraulic Fracturing Regulatory Act are now denouncing them.4 5 The draft regulations create a series of dangerous loopholes that actually weaken key parts of the original law by making it harder for doctors to get access to information about the secret chemicals used for fracking, making it easier for the fracking industry to store toxic wastewater in open pits, helping the fracking industry avoid accountability when it contaminates drinking water and imposing only paltry fines on companies that violate the rules.6

    Tell the Illinois Department of Natural Resources: Scrap your dangerous pro-fracking regulations and ban fracking.

    These dangerously weak regulations validate grassroots groups' claims that the Hydraulic Fracturing Regulatory Act will not protect Illinoisans from fracking. Fracking poses risks to air, water, public health and the climate that no regulations can eliminiate -- and, as its flawed regulations demonstrate, the Illinois Department of Natural Resources clearly isn't planning to pick a fight with the fracking industry to protect public health and safety.

    The industry and its allies no doubt hoped that they could steamroll opposition to fracking by pushing a flimsy "compromise" bill that allows regulated fracking and propagating the myth that, with regulations, fracking would be safe. But, although the Hydraulic Fracturing Regulatory Act is now law, activists in southern Illinois communities threatened by fracking are continuing to doggedly oppose this toxic industry.

    This is a pivotal moment in the fight against fracking in Illinois. If these rules are finalized, little will stand between Illinois and a major fracking boom. That's why we need to take a stand now and call on the Illinois Department of Natural Resources to scrap its proposed rules.

    Tell the Illinois Department of Natural Resources: Scrap your dangerous pro-fracking regulations and ban fracking.

    1. Doug Finke, "Fracking in Illinois still months away," The State Journal-Register, July 28, 2013
    2. Jeff Biggers, "Fracking Illinois: Two or Three Things We Know for Sure," Huffington Post, November 19, 2013
    3. Jeff Biggers and Ben Evans, "Illinois’ Flawed Fracking Law Is Everyone’s Problem, Ecologist Says," Yes! Magazine, July 4, 2013
    4. Julie Wernau, "Environmentalists feel betrayed by proposed fracking rules," Chicago Tribune, November 17, 2013
    5. Elizabeth McCarthy, "Illinois launches hearings on controversial proposed fracking regulations," Medill Reports, November 26, 2013
    6. Ann Alexander, "Illinois' draft fracking regulations: haste makes waste," NRDC Switchboard, November 15, 2013