MSC-API-PIOGA Public Health Research Statement

PITTSBURGH, Pa. – Following the announcement of new public health research today by Governor Wolf and Secretary of Health Dr. Levine, the Marcellus Shale Coalition, the Associated Petroleum Industries of Pennsylvania and the Pennsylvania Independent Oil & Gas Association issued the following joint statement:

“We appreciate and share Governor Wolf’s commitment to determining cause of these complicated and heartbreaking health issues.

“We continue to strongly support transparent, rigorous and objective research that comprehensively and thoroughly evaluates all potential factors and other efforts aimed at better understanding these highly complex and difficult matters.

“We are committed to working closely with the administration on this research – as noted in our letter to the governor earlier this year – and encourage state officials to neutrally, fairly and without bias evaluate all potential factors.

“The concerns in these communities are shared with our industry. We live here too and have no higher priority than protecting and ensuring the health and safety of our communities, especially our kids and grandkids.”

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KEY FACTS & BACKGROUND INFO

Letters to Wolf Administration

Research

  • (Jun. 2019) Pa. & CO Dept. of Health Review of Epidemiologic Research on Shale & Health: Research from the Pa. Dept. of Health & Colorado Dept. of Health concluded the majority of studies tying negative health outcomes to shale development were rated “low certainty” and limited in design. Most, according to the research, had “conflicting evidence (mixed), insufficient evidence, or in some cases, a lack of evidence of the possibility for harmful health effects.” (Source)
  • (2016) Wash. Co. Air Quality Monitoring “Well-Below Health-Protective Levels”: An air quality study in Washington Co. PA, sponsored by Ft. Cherry School District, concluded that the presence and operation of a hydraulic fracturing well pad “did not substantially affect local air concentrations of total and individual VOCs” and “all individual VOC concentrations in the monitored area were well below health-protective levels.” (Source)
  • (2015) Magee Women’s Research Institute Response to Low Infant Birth Weights Study: “The study found no significant and consistent association between residence near UGD wells and either preterm births or fetal anomalies. The results do not rely on the most stringent criteria for clinically relevant fetal growth abnormality, and do not support a conclusion that the proximity to the UGD wells caused reduced birth weights or higher incidence of SGA.” (Source)
  • American Cancer Society: “There are no known lifestyle-related or environmental causes of Ewing tumors.” (Source)
  • UPMC’s Dr. Kelly Bailey: “We have no data right now showing that there’s any environmental exposure, anything like that, that would lead to one developing Ewing sarcoma.”(Source)
  • (Oct. 2019) Dr. Sharon Watkins, Pa. Dept. of Health: “The densest areas [of Ewing’s sarcoma] are where you see the population live. It’s not showing in places other than where there are more children…We did not see a clustering of Ewing Sarcoma in the northeastern part of the state that has quite a bit of fracking as well,” Dr. Watkins said. (Source)