Last week, Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) hosted a GIS mapping workshop titled “Mapping Recreational Uses in Maryland’s Western Region—Informing Marcellus Shale Planning Efforts”.
MDTU Board member Scott C. Scarfone represented our chapter at the session, along with members of the TU Mid-Atlantic Council, offering his expertise on brook trout resources in Garrett County. During the workshop individuals affiliated with various outdoor recreation and conservation groups were invited to help identify and map areas of value that should be given special consideration as the debate about future natural gas extraction (“fracking”) and the related establishment of regulations and best industry practices continues.
This was an important opportunity for MDTU to express concerns about the vulnerability and value of cold water habitat in our state. The resulting data is now included in a document that will be used by state officials to establish policies intended to protect these special resources. Scarfone explains, “Our intent is to build a case to keep drilling and the associated development activities that come with it away from our precious recreational resources like our fabled brook trout streams and their fragile watersheds.” To volunteer to support our chapter’s ongoing efforts to protect brook trout habitat, send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or join us at an upcoming meeting. For more information about Marcellus Shale development, and its environmental impacts, visit http://www.tu.org/tu-projects/eastern-shale-gas-development