Friday, Oct 09th

Last update03:31:45 AM GMT

You are here News Environment Pennsylvania Court Deals Blow to Secrecy-Obsessed Fracking Industry

Pennsylvania Court Deals Blow to Secrecy-Obsessed Fracking Industry

E-mail Print PDF

Pennsylvania court deals blow to fracking secrecyA Pennsylvania judge in the heart of the Keystone State’s fracking belt has issued a forceful and precedent-setting decision holding that there is no corporate right to privacy under that state’s constitution, giving citizens and journalists a powerful tool to understand the health and environmental impacts of natural gas drilling in their communities.

“Whether a right of privacy for businesses exists within the prenumbral rights of Pennsylvania’s constitution is a matter of first impression,” wrote Washington County Court of Common Pleas Judge Debbie O’Dell Seneca late last month. “It does not.”

Judge O’Dell Seneca’s ruling comes in an ongoing case where several newspapers sued to unseal a confidential settlement where major fracking corporations paid $750,000 to a family that claimed the gas drilling had contaminated their water and harmed their health. The Court ordered that settlement unsealed, enabling the papers, environmentalists and community rights advocates to examine the health issues and causes.

“The ruling represents the first crack in the judicial armor that has been so meticulously welded together by major corporations,” said Thomas Linzey, executive director of the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund, which has helped 150 communities in eight states adopt Community Bill of Rights to limit corporate powers. “It affirms what many communities already know, that change only occurs when people begin to openly question and challenge legal doctrines that have been treated as sacred by most lawyers and judges.”


Most Recent Related Stories...

South Carolina floods: climate change intensified conditions, scientists say

South carolina floodsScientists say climate change has exacerbated the effects of a storm blamed for at least nine...

Cargo Ship With 33 Crew Members Aboard Missing in Hurricane Joaquin

Cargp ship missingThe U.S. Coast Guard and Air Force Hurricane Hunters were searching the Atlantic Ocean near Crooked...

U.S. settles claims with BP over 2010 spill

BP settlementThe U.S. Justice Department announced Monday it reached a settlement with British energy company BP over...

Hurricane Joaquin 'extremely dangerous' category 4, 130 mph winds

HoaquinHurricane Joaquin was upgraded to an "extremely dangerous" Category 4 storm Thursday afternoon with 130 mph...
America's # 1 Enemy
Tee Shirt
& Help Support!
TVNL Tee Shirt
Conserve our Planet
& Help Support!
Get your 9/11 & Media
Deception Dollars
& Help Support!
The Loaded Deck
The First & the Best!
The Media & Bush Admin Exposed!