Fracking resolution on District 11 community meeting agenda - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports

Fracking resolution on District 11 community meeting agenda

Proposed fracking site Proposed fracking site

A community meeting of St. Tammany Parish Council District 11 will take up the request for a delay in the issuing of fracking permits as part of its agenda Wednesday.

The district will consider a resolution to ask the Commissioner of Conservation to consider delaying issuing any permits involving fracking. The Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation says if a Helis Oil Company drilling project moves forward, it could be the first of thousands of wells on the north shore.

Fracking operations require huge volumes of water, and the foundation and some residents worry that could siphon off water that would otherwise flow into scenic waterways on the north shore.

"If something happens to contaminate our water system, there's no way we can fix it," said resident Shari McDermott.

In addition, state and federal regulators say concerns over an endangered frog species must also be considered before any permit is approved.

"We would work with U.S. Fish and Wildlife to assess impacts to not only the dusky gopher frog, but any endangered species in the area," said Ricky Boyett with the Army Corps of Engineers.

Supporters argue that fracking has been used safely in other parts of Louisiana. Some state officials say allowing fracking could create an economic boom for the area and increase the supply of natural gas.

Wednesday's District 11 community meeting is set for 7 p.m. at Bayou Woods Elementary School in Slidell.

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