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Frack Free Fest offers entertainment, information

Posted October 2, 2013 by Joe Rehana in Community

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The grass-roots organization Southern Illinoisans Against Fracturing our Environment (SAFE) is offering an evening of free music, guest speakers and other entertainment in its pursuit to speak out against hydraulic fracturing in Southern Illinois.

Makanda band, Hobo Knife, playing at MisunderStudio in Murphysboro this past summer.  Hobo Knife is scheduled to join Woodbox Gang and County Graves for a free concert Oct. 12, from 7 p.m. to 1 a.m. at The Trails End Lodge in Cobden and sponsored by SAFE.  ~ photo courtesy of Hobo Knife

Makanda band, Hobo Knife, playing at MisunderStudio in Murphysboro this past summer. Hobo Knife is scheduled to join Woodbox Gang and County Graves for a free concert Oct. 12, from 7 p.m. to 1 a.m. at The Trails End Lodge in Cobden and sponsored by SAFE. ~ photo courtesy of Hobo Knife

The Woodbox Gang, Hobo Knife and County Graves are to perform during an outdoor evening concert to be held Oct. 12, from 7 p.m. to 1 a.m. at The Trails End Lodge in Cobden.

Media Relations Coordinator for SAFE, Annette McMichael, said it is their goal to educate Southern Illinois residents about the dangers of fracking as they continue to keep a dialog open on the subject.

“Fracking will cause great harm to Southern Illinois families and our way of life,” McMichael said.  “Fracking will use millions of gallons of fresh water that cannot be returned to the water table, create potential water and air contamination and devastate Southern Illinois’ growing tourism industry.”

Proponents of hydraulic fracturing claim that regulations in the Illinois Hydraulic Fracturing Regulatory Act, which passed in both houses at the end of May, created the “nation’s strongest environmental protections” to regulate hydraulic fracturing.

“This bill is a jobs creator,” Illinois State Senator Gary Forby, D-Benton, said in a press release upon passage of Senate Bill 1715, the Regulatory Act. “Hydraulic fracturing has the potential to add thousands of good-paying, local jobs and provide a needed boost to our economy here in Southern Illinois.”

Southern Illinoisans Against Fracturing our Environment recently hosted a forum in Goreville to help address the issues they say are most at risk, such as the area’s groundwater.  The organization is set to host another forum in Vienna on Monday, Oct. 14, from 7 to 8 p.m. at the Vienna Library looking to discuss “the importance of baseline testing, legal options for your community and ten things the oil and gas companies won’t tell you,” McMichael said.

“Injection wells used in the fracking process cause earthquakes,” McMichael added.  “SAFE is adamantly opposed to fracking in the highly volatile New Madrid Fault and Wabash Valley Fault in Southern Illinois.”

For more information on SAFE and its upcoming programs point your browser to DontFractureIllinois.net.