Coalition Requests Consumer Protection from Deceptive Oil and Gas Leases

September 14, 2012

Citizens for a Healthy Community joined with more than 100 grassroots consumer, religious, public health and environmental organizations from 20 states to ask the Obama Administration and State Attorneys General to investigate the impact of deceptive oil and gas leasing practices on U.S. property values and mortgages.

The Coalition’s letter (PDF) requests Director Richard Cordray, of the newly created U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), investigate the extent to which oil and gas companies misrepresent or fail to disclose the risks of drilling and hydraulic fracturing when they approach landowners to lease their land for drilling operations.

The groups also asked the CFPB to develop robust disclosure standards and other regulations that would prevent oil and gas companies from engaging in deceptive leasing practices and to work with stakeholders to develop a campaign to educate the public about the ways that oil and gas leases may affect property values and mortgages.

The request follows an Environmental Working Group investigation that found drilling companies regularly disclose the risks of fracking to their shareholders and investors, yet downplay or conceal these very same risks from potential leaseholders.

To read the letter, click here (PDF).

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