100 Organizations Send Letter To Gov. Wolf Asking To Investigate Possible Link Between Childhood Cancer And Fracking

More than 100 organizations and nearly 900 individuals sent the letter to Wolf

Lynne Hayes-Freeland
June 17, 2019 - 12:49 pm

(Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)


(Newsradio 1020 KDKA) - Is the fracking industry responsible for the rare childhood cancers in Southwest Pennsylvania?

That's what over 100 organizations and nearly 900 individuals are asking the state to find out, in a public letter delivered to Governor Tom Wolf and Health Secretary Rachel Levine Monday

Emily Wurth is with Food and Water Watch which helped lead the effort.

 She tells KDKA Radio's Lynne Hayes-Freeland, the public letter came after investigative reporting by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:

“They identified at least 46 children in the four counties (Washington, Greene, Fayette and Westmoreland) who have been suffering from cancer and at least 27 cases of Ewing sarcoma which is a rare bone cancer that only affects between 200 and 250 people across the country each year,” said Wurth.

The letter also calls for the suspension of gas drilling permits until the investigation is complete.

“We’re actually calling on (Wolf) to suspend issuing new permits until we understand what is causing these rare forms of cancer in children, our most vulnerable community.”

The letter contends almost 12,000 gas wells have been drilled in Washington, Greene, Fayette and Westmoreland counties since 2004.

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