Natural-gas drilling is coming to the Delaware River. Rich natural-gas deposits are expected in the Upper Delaware River Watershed in Pennsylvania's and New York's Marcellus Shale.

But this boom has a big price. The extraction methods can, and have, contaminated drinking water, streams, and rivers; destroyed mature forests and ecologically and economically important habitats; and damaged the quality of life in communities where drilling is happening.

Thankfully, our region has better protections than the rest of Pennsylvania.

Decades of effort and expense have gone into cleaning up the Delaware River and establishing special protection regulations that do not allow the river's high water quality to be degraded. To ensure protection, the Delaware River Basin Commission has announced that all gas-drilling projects must now receive DRBC approval. The DRBC has made the right decision - to prevent damage at the right moment, before natural-gas development happens.

Maya K. van Rossum, Delaware Riverkeeper

Tracy Carluccio, Delaware Riverkeeper Network

Bristol