- Update to snow storm, holiday travel forecast
- Alfonso Ribeiro Wins 'Dancing with the Stars' Season 19 Finals
- Girl, 15, dies after gang of men set fire to her in revenge for fighting off their attempt to molest her outside her home in India
- Labour's 'posh' schools spokesman Tristram Hunt accused of fighting a class war instead of improving education
- Mother turns the dozens of items taken from her toddler's mouth into art after finding him chewing on a packet of rat poison
- EXCLUSIVE: Thai doctor 'who caused death of British girl' after he gave her buttock implants is secretly back at work offering surgery just weeks after tragedy
- Bravery of facial palsy sufferer who found love and married after painful surgery and years spent hiding indoors
- NFL star whose daughter's battle with cancer captured hearts of nation has not paid child support in MONTHS, child's mother claims
- Brave unarmed female Papa Johns manager tackles pair of Ferguson looters
- 'If Moses lived today, they'd send drones after him': Christian Bale's take on biblical story after he studied it for upcoming film
Potential Fracking In Maryland Sparks Controversy
More from Baltimore
Reporting Gigi Barnett
Filed underLocal, News, Syndicated Local
Related tagsFracking, Fracking Conference, Fracking In Maryland, Maryland Fracking, Maryland Fracking Conference
Popular Entertainment Photo Galleries
Car Snapped: Celebrities Caught On The Go
Notable Deaths Of 2012
All-Time Father-Son Celebrity Duos
25 Downs: NFL Injuries Over The Years
» More Photo Galleries
BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Does it harm or help? That’s the question surrounding a controversial natural gas drilling method that could come to western Maryland. Gigi Barnett explains the answers were considered this weekend in the first statewide conference on fracking.
Hydraulic fracturing—or “fracking” for short—is a new controversial method of finding natural gas in marcellus shale. In Virginia and West Virginia, oil and gas companies are leasing vast amounts of farm land for fracking. Now they’ve set their sights on Maryland but one unanswered question remains: is it safe?
“This is about, `Do we want these sort of drilling operations all over our state and if we did do them, what would happen?’” said Chesapeake Climate Action Network Executive Director Mike Tidwell.
CCAN is an independent environmental group. They launched a day-long conference at the University of Baltimore this weekend on the pitfalls and profits of fracking.
While the drilling method is banned in Maryland by order of the governor, Tidwell says fracking has wreaked havoc in other states.
“It’s led to contaminated water. It’s led to even earthquakes, forest fragmentation, deforestation,” he said.
This is the first statewide conference on the pros and cons of fracking. For some farmers in western Pennsylvania and Ohio, the drilling method has paid off by hundreds of thousands of dollars.
“I never dreamed of money like this—$434,000,” said one farmer. “It fell out of the sky.”
Gas and oil companies have asked to drill on Dana Shimrock’s farm in western Maryland. She wants a study first.
“There are going to be huge haves and have-nots. It’s like gambling in Las Vegas—are you going to be a big winner or a big loser?” Shimrock said.
More than 300 people attended this weekend’s conference on fracking.