After years of research, New York issued the final required document to officially ban hydraulic fracturing, also known as fracking, from the state, reported RT.
“Prohibiting high-volume hydraulic fracturing is the only reasonable alternative,” said New York Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Joe Martens. “[Fracking] poses significant adverse impacts to land, air, water, natural resources and potential significant public health impacts that cannot be adequately mitigated.”
“This decision is consistent with DEC’s mission to conserve, improve and protect our state’s natural resources, and to enhance the health, safety and welfare of the people of the state,” he continued.
The New York DEC had conducted a seven-year study on the environmental implications of allowing fracking operations to begin in the state. After years of study and surveys, the DEC concluded that the possibility of harm resulting from fracking was to high to risk allowance of the practice.
RT noted that fracking advocacy groups have vowed lawsuits against the state, but environmental attorneys familiar with the fracking ban say that the DEC review will hold up legally. The DEC review included much public input. In 2009, 13,000 public comments were made on the statement’s draft. That number grew to 180,000 by 2011.
Environmental advocates praised New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) for remaining steadfast against pressure from the oil and gas industry.
“We salute Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s refusal to bow to industry pressure,” said Deborah Goldberg, managing attorney of Earthjustice. “He had the courage to do what no other state or federal leader has had the courage to do: let the available scientific evidence dictate whether fracking should proceed in New York.”
New York fared well compared to other places that have tried to ban fracking. Some towns in Texas have attempted to ban fracking, but industry pressure always manipulates local politicians into favoring businesses. The result is banning restrictions on fracking. There’s still a lot of work to do against fracking, but New York’s ban is a good sign.