By Barbara W. Brandom, M.D.
The argument by Oz that exploiting energy resources of Pennsylvania will bring prosperity is not supported by the history of this region. From the beginning of the fracking boom, as well as during earlier extraction of wood, coal & oil, local communities experienced only minimal, transient financial benefit compared to the big money going to executives and multinational corporations.
Corporations control the prices of their products. Look at the profits companies made last year. Corporations do not consider the effects of their actions on the health of local people and populations far away. Our lives are externalities on their spreadsheets.
Furthermore, I see the relationship between patients and their doctors deteriorating because of the effects of corporations controlling the actions of their employed health care providers. When the bottom line is driving the parameters of work of providers, interaction with patients is undermined. The perspective of surgeons must be examined in detail to ensure that they consider the true needs of their patients.
Fracking is not safe. The negative effects of fracking on health are well documented. More fracking only helps the corporations that also use taxpayers’ money to show profit.