– Groups Call on Gov. Cuomo to Protect All of NY’s Communities from Fracking, Release Top Secret Fracking Plan

June 13, 2012

Groups Call on Gov. Cuomo to Protect All of NY’s Communities from Fracking, Release Top Secret Fracking Plan

ALBANY, NY (06/13/2012)–In response to reports that New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is proposing that industrial gas drilling by means of hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” be permitted in select communities, New York Water Rangers partners Catskill Mountainkeeper, Earthjustice, Earthworks, Environmental Advocates NY, Environment New York, Otsego 2000, and Riverkeeper released the following statement:

“Based on our organizations’ review of the state’s draft fracking proposals, New York is absolutely not prepared to allow fracking-anywhere. The Department of Environmental Conservation has not yet undertaken a comprehensive health impacts assessment or cumulative impacts analysis, addressed significant concerns about fracking wastewater, closed the state’s hazardous waste loophole, or prohibited the use of toxic chemicals in fracking fluid.

Governor Cuomo’s proposal to permit fracking in municipalities that have self-identified as eager to do so does not address these critical problems or how communities’ health, and air and water quality will be protected from harm. Simply limiting the geographic and geological scope of gas development does not make it safe.

The Governor’s plan also raises questions regarding how communities will assess their readiness to allow fracking or prepare for and fund the damage caused by gas drilling, such as the readiness of local emergency and road maintenance services. The state has not conducted any analysis of community needs or if it has, the state has not shared any such analysis with New Yorkers.

For nearly four years, the Department of Environmental Conservation has given New Yorkers the opportunity to review the state’s fracking proposals as they are developed. The alternative described in the New York Times today is not included in the state’s draft environmental review-in fact, it is inconsistent with the current document. If the Governor’s proposal is real, a full analysis of it must be released for public scrutiny and comment before the state’s environmental review of fracking is finalized.”