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Anti-Fracking Campaign in Wayne National Forest

by Elizabeth Alford on April 4, 2016

Anti-fracking forces accelerate their efforts in Ohio with a new advertising campaign aimed fracking activity in Wayne National Forest.

Related: More Support for Ohio Mineral Owners

On a stretch of U.S. RT 33, just southeast of Nelsonville, Ohio, a new billboard is on display just across from the Wayne National Forest headquarters. The message is clear….fracking is not welcome here.

The location of the billboard was strategic because is a major highway traveled by people from all over the state and country.

Local anti-fracking activists who rented the advertising space have been protesting for months against the U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management who are considering opening the Wayne National Forest to fracking. They claim that fracking in the forest is both illegal and dangerous for the climate.

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At stake is the potential to lease 31,900 acres of the forest for oil and gas exploration, which has hundreds of Ohio landowners up in arms.  Though the decision involves only federally owned mineral rights, if the mineral rights of the forest remain off limits, it can block adjacent property owners from leasing their minerals.

 “I’m a landowner and I am frustrated with not being able to fully develop my private mineral rights because energy companies are unable to drill under the Wayne Forest. I talked to my neighbors and realized I wasn’t the only one with this problem,” said LEASE founder Becky Clutter in an email earlier this year. Athens News

BLM is currently preparing an environmental assessment to consider whether or not to lease the land in the national forest’s Marietta Unit.

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