Today, a coalition of groups supporting a moratorium on fracking in Illinois descended on the state capitol. HB 3086 and SB 1418 would both establish a two-year moratorium on the controversial practice of high-volume hydraulic fracturing.
High-volume horizontal fracturing (fracking) is devastating to our communities, land, water and contributes to the continued destabilization of our climate. Sierra Club stands with those who are calling on Springfield to enact a moratorium on fracking in Illinois, and we urge legislators to support HB3086 and SB1418.
Sierra Club opposes fracking in Illinois, and wants to stop this destructive practice before it starts. We continue to stand with our friends and allies that support a moratorium and urge state legislators to support HB 3086 and SB 1418. A moratorium affords us the opportunity to prioritize protecting public health and the environment while we look more closely at the damaging risks posed by yet another extractive industry in our state.
Because fracking, sadly, is legal in our state today, a moratorium is the safest and best approach for dealing with this threat. Strong regulatory measures are also important to protect the environment and public health, but new regulations will not make fracking safe. We do need to update our pre-World War II era oil and gas regulations, but our support for additional protections does not mean we have confidence that fracking can be done safely or without pollution. We believe that the safest option for Illinois is to adopt a moratorium so that we can study the risks of fracking in an open and transparent way.
There is a better way to develop energy for Illinois. Rather than our continued reliance on fossil fuels, we should continue to build our clean energy economy. Illinois’ clean energy economy has created 20,000 jobs, saved consumers $177 million and cut climate changing pollution by more than 5 million tons. Illinois should embrace the opportunities of a clean energy future and pass on the extractive fossil fuels of the past.