Fracking to be banned in New York

The Cuomo's administration's long-awaited decision on whether to allow hydrofracking in the state arrived today during a cabinet meeting -- and it will move to formally ban the method of extracting natural gas from the earth. [NYT]

The decision was pegged to the long-delayed state Department of Health study of the issue. A key clip from Capitol Confidential:

While [acting state health commissioner Howard] Zucker took pains to point out that the data on long-term impacts of hydrofracking is not fully conclusive, he turned personal in his decision.
"Would I live in a community with HVHF (high-volume hydraulic fracturing) based on the facts I have now?" Zucker said. "Would I let my child play in the school field nearby, or my family drink the water from the tap or grow their vegetables in the soil? After looking at a plethora of reports ... my answer is no."

Allowing fracking had been pitched as potential economic development for the Southern Tier, which sits atop natural gas deposits in the Marcellus Shale formation. Pennsylvania allows fracking, and a large swath of the state has natural gas wells now. The Southern Tier has some of the highest unemploymen rates in the state. [NPR State Impact]

But fracking also appears to involve some significant environmental risks, especially for ground water, and environmentalists and other advocacy groups have been pushing hard on the Cuomo admin over the last few years to not allow fracking.

Comments

Lil Andrew finally makes a decision and it's actually the correct one. Didn't think he had it in him.

@Cheese: What you said!

Last one out of Upstate, please turn off the lights.

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