Put an end to 'fracking' and other letters to the editors

Put an end to 'fracking' and other letters to the editors

November 9th, 2012 in Opinion Letters

Put an end to 'fracking'

Attention those living in the Tennessee region. Take a lighter or match and turn on your faucet while holding the flame to the water. If your water catches fire, then your water has been subjected to heavy contamination thanks to the process known as hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking." Fracking involves pumping large amounts of water, gas and toxic chemicals at a high pressure into the ground to extract shale gas from shale rock formations, used for natural gas. Drilling in Tennessee on the Chattanooga Shale has created serious threats to ground and surface water contamination. A case study by the Harpeth River Watershed Association says in many places, the Chattanooga Shale is separated from the water supply by just 100 feet.

Despite recent attempts in the House of Representatives to force the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation to more stringent guidelines, they've been largely unregulated.

Proposed TDEC rules say public notice will only be required for wells with 200,000 gallons of water or more, which is hardly ever the case. Fracking already has caused environmental damage in the United States. Now they want to move it here. Do we really want to risk our health? Contact your House representative to help put an end to this catastrophe.


Art education highly beneficial

A great emphasis is put on the arts in Chattanooga, therefore without such things as the sculptures and artwork found throughout the city or the art district downtown our lovely city would be dull and boring.

Our public schools without the arts incorporated into our children's learning would also be lacking in life and spirit. Unfortunately, after the No Child Left Behind Act, art was considered unimportant and unnecessary. It became optional when it really needed to be required due to all of the benefits that come from art.

Art helps to develop cognitive skills, critical thinking skills, problem-solving skills, language skills, self-discipline, cultural appreciation, and goal-setting skills. Also, young people who participate in art are four times more likely to be recognized for an academic achievement, elected to class office, participate in a math or science fair, and win an award for writing.

Furthermore, it improves attendance and participation in class. At-risk youth show signs of improvement when enrolled in art programs as well.

To support art in public schools and art programs, you can visit www.artsusa.org/get_involved or enroll your loved ones or yourself in an art class to enjoy the benefits of art education.