Natural Resources

Join me in speaking up for public lands

Your voice is important and powerful.

I should know, as Senator Randy Gardner did the right thing for Ohio by publicly announcing that he is against drilling in state parks, quoting the following letter that I wrote to him:

“Sen. Randall L. Gardner,

I urge you to vote against effort to override Governor Kasich's line item veto the Oil and Gas Leasing Commission Amendment to the budget bill.

Fracking in State Parks

Gov. John Kasich signed the new state budget into law, but with 47 line-item vetoes. The Ohio House of Representatives overturned 11 of those vetoes, including Kasich's veto on allowing the Ohio General Assembly to take over appointing members to the Ohio Oil and Gas Leasing Commission. This could lead the way to fracking, or the process of drilling to extract oil and gas from shale rock, in state parks and other public lands.

Today we look at the process and the impact of this decision.

‘Government Violating Own Laws to Pave Way for Fracking Plan’ in Ohio’s Only National Forest

“The Wayne National Forest is home to many species who can’t afford to have their habitat damaged by oil and gas development,” said Nathan Johnson, public lands director with the Ohio Environmental Council. “We need to do all we can to protect wildlife that can’t protect themselves.”

In defense of veto, Kasich contends Medicaid-enrollment freeze is illegal

In another policy area, the Ohio Environmental Council — not always a friend of the governor — strongly praised his veto of a provision that probably would have brought fracking to Ohio state parks and other public lands.

“We cherish our state parks and state lands as places to hike, hunt, fish and enjoy with our families, and the governor’s veto keeps these lands safe from oil and gas development for the time being,” said Sarah Spence, director of government affairs for the council’s action fund.

Statement from the Ohio Environmental Council on the FY2018 House Budget Opening the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to Drilling

In its just-released Fiscal Year 2018 budget resolution, the U.S. House of Representatives today included instructions that would enable the House Natural Resources Committee to authorize drilling for oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge through the federal budget process. The following statement can be attributed in full, or in part, to Nathan Johnson, Public Lands Director for the Ohio Environmental Council:


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