The Gas Lobby Legislative Caucus (they call themselves the Shale Caucus) has taken credit for shouting down efforts to make gas drillers pay for the damage they do to county roads with their rigs. Instead, the majority of people and state that receive no benefits from the shale will pay the bill.

So I was glad to get this notice today about a Capitol event tomorrow. I’ll call the organizers the Environmental Caucus, though you get a lot farther at the legislature advocating the interests of corporations than those of clean air and water.

The Arkansas Public Policy Panel will release a report highlighting findings that many states have stronger protections for landowners, air quality, water quality and public health from the negative impacts of natural gas development using hydraulic fracturing of shale formations, as used in the Arkansas Fayetteville Shale play. The report recommends adoption of new standards for natural gas development in Arkansas, pulling from stronger protections utilized in other states and localities.

Arkansas legislators Rep. Kathy Webb, Rep. Greg Leding, Rep. Homer Lenderman, Rep. Bobby Joe Pierce and Sen. Mary Anne Salmon will join Bill Kopsky, Executive Director of the Arkansas Public Policy Panel, and an Arkansas landowner who has experience with natural gas development for a brief media conference