More Than 350 Anti-Fracking Measures Passed By Local Governments

According to this list compiled by Food & Water Watch, some 359 local resolutions have been passed by local governing entities opposing hydraulic fracturing.

In terms of of actual fracking policy, these resolutions mean very little. Most of them were passed in urban communities far from actual fracking operations, more an expression of political distaste than anything else.

That certainly holds true here in North Dakota. On the list, under the heading “Indigenous,” is a resolution passed by the Turtle Mountain Band if Chippewa Indians. What’s interesting is that there isn’t any fracking going on anywhere near the Turtle Mountain reservation, and there isn’t likely to be any time soon.

Where there is fracking, though, is on the Forth Berthold reservation (home of the Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara or Three Affiliated Tribes) tribal leaders seem not only supportive of fracking but also have questioned the federal government’s authority to regulate fracking there.

“Although the BLM has jurisdiction to regulate activities on ‘public lands,’ Indian lands are not public lands,” tribal leader Tex Hall told a US House subcomittee in 2012. “Indian reservations are set aside and reserved for the exclusive use and benefit of Indian tribes. Neither the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976 nor the Department of Interior’s Departmental Manual provide BLM with direct or delegated authority over Indian lands.”

The celebrities and activists who have taken up the anti-fracking banner have done a good job of politicizing, and nationalizing the issue, convincing left-wing politicians in local government to pass these resolutions. But it’s telling that in places where fracking is actually happening, places where energy development is creating jobs and prosperity, there’s a lot more support for it.

Rob Port is the editor of SayAnythingBlog.com, a columnist for the Forum News Service, and host of the Plain Talk Podcast which you can subscribe to by clicking here.

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