Marisa Twigg, Creative and Communications Director, September 18, 2023
COLUMBUS, OH — Today, the Oil and Gas Land Management Commission voted to approve leasing nominations for four parcels of land currently owned by the Ohio Department of Transportation, and tabled all other nominations pertaining to state parks and wildlife areas until their next meeting.
In response to the meeting, the following quote can be attributed, in whole or in part, to Nathan Johnson, Senior Attorney for Land and Water at the Ohio Environmental Council:
“During today’s meeting, Commissioners wrongly concluded they do not have the ability to deny leasing nominations because of the legislature’s support for leasing. But this is a rubber-stamp attitude and an abandonment of the Commission’s legal duty to consider both denying and approving state lands leasing nominations. The Commission is required by statute to consider denying leasing nominations based on a host of factors — including environmental impacts and user conflicts.”
“The Commission’s decision to lease some of Ohio’s public lands for fracking drags our state backwards when we need to be moving forward on climate change. The Commission is doubling down on dirty, polluting energy at a time when the world urgently needs to phase out fossil fuels — not drill our state parks for more. What Ohioans need is clean energy, not more oil and gas that increases air, land and water pollution at the detriment of human and environmental health.”
“The Ohio attorney general has taken the submission of fake pro-fracking comments seriously enough to launch an investigation and issue subpoenas. The fact that the Commission is approving leasing nominations when this investigation has just begun is deeply troubling.”