Madison County Residents Voice Opinions in Fracking Debate

Madison County Residents Voice Opinions in Fracking Debate
Posted at 6:05 PM, Apr 13, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-13 14:45:26-04

MADISON, FL (WTXL) - The fallout over fracking in the area continues, this time in Madison County where residents gathered at the courthouse annex Wednesday to speak out on an anti-fracking measure.

At the heart of the debate is the fear that the chemicals used to release natural gas from the earth will have negative ramifications for the environment.

And while some residents argue that fracking hurts the environment, those who want to bring fracking to the county say it's more sustainable than conventional drilling methods or the process of generating electricity.

Jim Holden is an area resident and says, "We have plenty of natural gas. We can now save the world, still drive our vehicles and still have a great standard of living."

Other citizens are thinking green but not necessarily as it relates to sustainability. Ronnie Moore is an engineer and Madison County Commissioner. He says fracking can help boost the economy.

"We able to better compete, and that's one advantage we have," said Moore.

The bill banning fracking for the entire state died in the House this past legislative session but county officials say they wanted to step in on a local level to stop the drilling.

They say even if they hold different opinions from their residents, they wanted to give them the opportunity to speak up before making a decision.

Moore says, "I like to take the issues and study them, make a decision based on the information that we receive."

The county plans to take all of the comments from Wednesday's hearing into consideration and will address the measure again in their next meeting.