Groups Warn Governor Cuomo About Gas Extraction Plan

An excellent demonstration of the power of letter-writing and media attention!

Groups warn Cuomo about gas extraction plan

Posted on March 30, 2011 at 1:02 pm by James M. Odato in General

About 40 groups, ranging from Neighbors of the Onondaga Nation to Trout Unlimited, wrote to Gov. Andrew Cuomo Tuesday advising him to put the brakes on allowing hydraulic fracturing that they said would pose risks as currently planned. Companies are eager to drill into the deep shale deposits below New York’s surface to extract natural gas.

“We are writing to you on an issue of urgent importance to all New Yorkers – assuring that New York State does not rush to allow risky new drilling techniques in the Marcellus and Utica Shale formations unless the protection of the State’s drinking water supplies and other irreplaceable resources can be demonstrated,” the groups, including Common Cause and the Natural Resources Defense Council, wrote.

“Specifically, we ask that you clearly confirm that the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) will be allowed both adequate time and resources to fully and properly evaluate the full range of potential risks associated with new natural gas development utilizing hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” before issuing a revised draft Supplemental Generic Environmental Impacts (DSGEIS) pursuant to Executive Order 41 (EO 41). Simply put, the arbitrary June 1, 2011 target date established by former Governor David Paterson in EO 41 is wholly inadequate to allow for the development of an appropriately comprehensive or legally sufficient revised DSGEIS.”

The letter was copied to Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Joe Martens.


AP Interview: New York drilling regs may take all summer

Published: Thursday, March 31, 2011, 9:36 AM     Updated: Thursday, March 31, 2011, 9:41 AM
The Associated Press By The Associated Press The Post-Standard

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Joe Martens, the new head of New York’s Department of Environmental Conservation, says gas drilling in the massive Marcellus Shale formation is the most daunting environmental issue the agency has faced in its 40-year history, but he’s hopeful rules will be in place by summer’s end to address all the potential impacts.

In an interview with The Associated Press Wednesday, Martens said DEC staff will meet twice a week starting in early April and through the summer to complete a new environmental impact statement for gas drilling that addresses issues raised in the 13,000 comments received on the first draft completed in September 2009.

New York has had a moratorium on gas drilling in the Marcellus Shale since 2008 while new rules are being developed.


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