Letters to the Editor, Feb. 13

Feb. 12, 2014 @ 09:41 AM

Let N.C. continue to lead

The writer of the letter, “Let the Fracking Begin” (Feb. 10), makes some good points. Unfortunately, none of his points apply to North Carolina.

First, A 2012 public policy poll conducted in North Carolina found that most respondents – 49 percent - when asked about fracking said, “huh?”. The remaining split evenly with 27 percent opposing and 24 percent in favor.

Second, I agree with the author that fracking “unleashes huge volumes” of natural gas; however, it often unleashes it into ground water. In fact, our own Duke University is conducting one of the largest studies on fracking and found that, on average, “methane concentrations were six times higher and ethane concentrations were 23 times higher at homes within a kilometer of a shale gas well”.

As for economic benefit, the chairman of the N.C. Mining and Energy Commission agrees that the industry “doesn’t typically bring with it a lot of or a very large number of long-term new jobs.” Additionally, the taxpayers are fronting the initial $4-$6 million cost to create the oil and gas program, further subsidizing an industry with record profits.

I applaud Gov. Pat McCrory for wanting to make North Carolina competitive with other states; however, that should not mean we follow other states. Instead, our leaders should build upon the educated, creative and talented individuals that make up our communities. In short, let North Carolina be what it has always been -- a leader in long-term economic vision and environmental stewardship.

Jason Beverly

Durham

What will cleanup cost?

It's just great that Duke Energy has apologized for the coal ash spill on the Dan River.

What I really want to know is, how much of the cost of cleanup is going to be passed on to us rate-payers?  After all, folks in Tennessee will be paying 67 cents a month for at least a decade because of the mess TVA's coal ash made there.

Patricia Carstensen

Durham

Demeaning, demoralizing

February 10th, I read the education announcement by Gov. Pat McCrory on the base salary increase for new teachers.

Though I understand all teacher salaries in North Carolina need an increase, I am at a loss with the current plan. My fiancé is a dedicated, hardworking teacher, who has worked as a North Carolina teacher for eight years. With this new plan, a first-year teacher without any experience will make $2,000 a year more than teachers who have remained loyal to North Carolina public schools.

This is a sure way to demean and demoralize North Carolina’s experienced educators.  In 2013 McCrory wrote “It is not how much we spend, it is how well we spend it.” I can’t help but feel that McCrory forgot that quote when this idea was proposed.

Carlton Daniel Dunman

Durham