CLEAN AIR COUNCIL ~ Promoting Fresh, Clean, Healthy Breathing

by Diana Gooding on December 26, 2021

Now is the time to boost the Clean Air Council, we need more of their work!

Dear Residents and Friends, Your Support is Needed Now!

We want to share a personal story from a Council member, Pastor Wesley Silva, whose home and community is impacted by pollution from the gas industry.

The Council helps prepare impacted residents from Washington County — the most heavily fracked region of Pennsylvania — to testify to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Michael Regan about the hazards of gas drilling.

Pastor Wesley Silva works with Clean Air Council on how best to communicate the concerns of rural Pennsylvanians to the EPA in advance of a new set of proposed federal regulations limiting pollution from oil and gas facilities. Speaking with Administrator Regan, Pastor Silva emphasizes how the gas industry has been “disrupting harmony” in Washington County for many years.

In addition to being the current pastor at the First Baptist Church of Smock, Pastor Silva is the former Council President of Marianna Borough. He resigned when the gas industry began obstructing local attempts to improve public health with more stringent zoning regulations for oil and gas facilities.

Pastor Silva spoke quite eloquently with EPA Administrator Regan about his granddaughter’s nosebleeds, headaches and vomiting that she began experiencing as gas drilling expanded in his township.

He expresses frustration on other health and safety hazards from oil and gas development like the damage constant industrial truck traffic does to small rural roads. Pastor Silva speaks about immense light and sound pollution that made it incredibly difficult to sleep as well as frequent ammonia and “rotten egg” odors emanating from gas well sites.

Pastor Silva recalls one scary incident where he had to tell his grandchildren and other young people in the neighborhood to rush inside as a pungent mist was visibly rolling through his community. In addition to dangerous public health conditions, Pastor Silva describes to EPA how the gas industry representatives disrupted local government and vilified those attempting to share their concerns about hydraulic fracturing.

Pastor Silva mentions that he was initially informed of the deadly Ewing Sarcoma cases in Southwest Pennsylvania by Clean Air Council Community Organizer Lois Bower-Bjornson. There are several diagnoses of Ewing Sarcoma in a Westmoreland County school district that are surrounded by gas drilling sites in addition to a landfill that was accepting radioactive fracking wastewater.

The Council is strongly committed to working with residents like Pastor Silva to ensure they are able to meaningfully participate in decisions that impact their health, quality of life and local environment.

The Council is currently assisting impacted residents from across the country to testify during three days of public hearings regarding the EPA’s new pollution rules for oil and gas facilities. The more people that testify, the stronger these final rules will be. To succeed in this work, we need your help.

Double your impact! Your gift today qualifies to be matched dollar-for-dollar up to $10,000 from by a generous Clean Air Council donor and longtime supporter.

Donate Today! Thank you for your support,

>>> Joseph Otis Minott, Esq. Executive Director
and Chief Counsel, Clean Air Council

Address ~ Clean Air Council, 135 S. 19th Street Suite 300 | Philadelphia, PA 19103

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Jessica Bellwoar December 29, 2021 at 10:36 pm

From the Clean Air Council, Planning For The New Year 2022

The start of 2022 provides a unique opportunity to reflect on the past and plan for a future healthier environment for everyone.

The Clean Air Council needs your help to continue its work protecting public health and local ecosystems. We have an ambitious goal of raising $50,000 online to finish the year off strong and ensure we can implement our priorities.

DOUBLE YOUR GIFT! The first $10,000 in donations will be matched $1-to-$1 by a Clean Air Council supporter!

Your contribution will support Clean Air Council’s priorities in 2022 to fight for a cleaner, healthier environment:

>>> Pushing federal, state and local governments to adopt policies to dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions

>>> Pushing for development of clean energy and the green economy

>>> Fighting for stricter standards across the fracking industry by demanding Pennsylvania close the loophole on methane inspection requirements for low-producing wells, which account for more than half the gas industry’s methane emissions

>>> Suing fossil fuel companies that ignore the law and harm public health and local ecosystems

>>> Advocating for adequate government funding to develop climate resilient infrastructure

>>> Working with impacted communities of color that have experienced disproportionate levels of pollution for decades–these are the same black and brown communities that are already suffering the worst impacts from climate change

>>> Advocating for the build out of more public transit and safer bicycling and walking

Any size contributions will be much appreciated.

MAKE AN IMPACT — Thank you for support!

Jessica Bellwoar, Development Officer


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