There was a fascinating town board meeting in Oxford, New York, Chenango County, recently. The town board was asked to consider enacting a ban or moratorium on natural gas development, which it decided to discuss in public forum. When word got out the board was going to be discussing natural gas, the prospective attendance grew to numbers the town hall couldn’t hold, so they were forced to move it to the local high school auditorium.
EID Marcellus was there in the form of yours truly and one thing struck me immediately as I took in the comments from the natural gas opponents who had pushed for the discussion. These activists seem to trust the town board members over the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) to make decisions about natural gas development, and, to think, no one on the town board has a geology or engineering degree! While I’m sure the town board appreciated such confidence, it wisely avoided acting upon it, demonstrating far more savvy than even natural gas opponents could have imagined.