Concerned Ohio River Residents recently presented Governor DeWine with many letters from concerned Ohio Valley residents asking him to withdraw his support of petrochemical development in Ohio. We explained that the truth is spreading about the public health and environmental risks posed by this industry therefore, resistance is growing. We also invited the Governor to join with us in creating a better vision for our state and region: a vision based on investment in renewable energy development and regenerative agriculture that fosters diversified and consistent economic growth. We asked for an opportunity to introduce him to scientists and experts on the threats posed by petrochemical development.
We did not receive a response from Governor DeWine; instead he talked to the local press proclaiming his continued support for the PTTGCA cracker plant proposed for Belmont County: ”DeWine said he and other state leaders are doing all they can to encourage PTTGCA to locate in Eastern Ohio.” The Governor has completely dismissed our concerns and continues to support an industry that threatens the health and safety of Ohio Valley residents.
It is also reported that the Governor and local leaders are "more than a little bit worried" about the future of the petrochemical buildout. This is a stark reminder that state and local leaders need to start developing more feasible and sustainable economic development strategies.
“But it’s not just Belmont County, it’s the whole region, because of other businesses that will spring up once they’re moving forward. It’s big.” Experts are making a compelling case that the development of "other businesses" to which the Governor refers is likely to be much smaller than "Shale Crescent" proponents have suggested.
It is a slap in the face to have our concerns ignored, and misinformation given by our elected officials. We find Governor DeWine’s dismissive behavior unacceptable and request a meeting with him to present our case. We respect the Governor’s service to Ohioans during these challenging times. We ask that he allow his heart to guide him in service to the people, not the corporations and their profits.