Statement: PennEnvironment criticizes President Trump’s visit to pro-fracking Shale Insight conference

Media Contacts
Zachary Barber

PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center

PITTSBURGH — President Donald Trump spoke today in support of fracking and petrochemicals at the Shale Insight conference, a two-day event featuring regional fracking industry associations. This comes after a visit on Aug. 13, 2019 to the massive Royal Dutch Shell petrochemical plant being built in Pittsburgh’s northern suburbs, which will convert fracked gas into plastic.

PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center’s Field Organizer Zachary Barber issued the following statement: 

“President Trump famously said he was elected to represent the citizens of Pittsburgh, yet he is again touting the same dirty, last-century industries like fracking and petrochemicals that are making Pittsburghers sick.

“From cradle to grave, the petrochemical industry threatens our health, environment and quality of life. The Shell Cracker plant is a perfect example. This facility will pump out hundreds of tons of cancer-causing chemicals and worsen climate change–all to produce plastic that is both unnecessary and will clog our oceans for thousands of years. 

“Pittsburgh has spent the last two decades clawing out of the pollution that’s choked our air, tainted our water and stained our city’s reputation. Now that we’ve finally made real headway, and neighborhoods and downtown are revitalizing, we can’t go back to the dangerous ways that held us back.

“Pittsburghers have a different vision for our future. It’s one with clean air, plastic-free rivers, and 100 percent clean renewable energy that leaves toxic fracking as a distant memory. If President Trump wants to represent Pittsburgh, he must recognize this and drop his support for petrochemicals.  Anything short of that spells catastrophe for our health and our climate.”


PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center ( is dedicated to protecting our water, air and open spaces. We investigate problems, craft solutions, educate the public and decision-makers, and help the public make their voices heard in local, state and national debates over the quality of our environment and our lives.