Activists rally against hydro-fracking

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Hundreds of opponents of hydraulic fracturing in New York gathered outside the state Capitol today to protest the controversial type of natural-gas drilling in the Marcellus Shale. Hydro-fracking, a process used to break shale formations and release gas, is opposed by environmentalists, who say the practice has “poisoned” water supplies in other parts of the country. After their rally, many of the protesters went to the Capitol to lobby their legislators, and others marched down to the state Department of Environmental Conservation to urge officials to take more time to review fracking and its potential dangers.

“Fooey on Fracking!” and “No Frackin’ Way” are some of the slogans on home-made signs.

Earlier this year, Gov. Andrew Cuomo extended an executive order for a moratorium on horizontal wells until July 1. The head of the Department of Environmental Conservation has said it could take through the end of the summer to finish its second report on the impact of this kind of gas drilling.

The protesters said Cuomo and the Legislature should not make the DEC rush to finish its environmental review and revised guidelines for how fracking would proceed in the state.

“New York State leaders have a chance to show the nation how to protect our water from fracking-by choosing safe and healthy drinking water over poisoned wells, destroyed property values, and devastated communities,” said Kate Hudson, Riverkeeper Watershed program director. “The oil and gas industry is eager to drill and now our leaders have a choice to make. We’re calling on Governor Cuomo and the State Legislature to put the long-term health of our communities and our water, air, and land ahead of short-term gas profits.”

“Today, the public’s demand for clean water-not dirty drilling, will be heard loud and clear,” said Adrienne Esposito, Executive Director for Citizens Campaign for the Environment. “Citizens will rally for our new Governor to uphold his campaign promise to keep New York State’s drinking water safe. This day of action provides us the opportunity to put our voices together and be heard above the enormous money interests of energy companies.”

The groups wants several measures passed in the Legislature this year, including bills that would:

— Require the DEC to create regulations requiring the gas industry to disclose the chemicals in fracking fluids and ban the use of fluids that could harm people’s health. Permits would be withheld until such regulations were developed.

— Set up home-rule zoning rules in addition to state regulations so communities can have a say in how towns and cities develop can have the power to oversee drilling as they do other industries.

— Require that all hazardous wastes produced by gas or oil facilities be considered hazardous for the purpose of transfer and treatment.

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  1. The NY Times had another scheme to boost their dropping sales.

    Two years ago, they had an “expose” of the dangers of “radiation” in granite kitchen counters!

    This story died quickly when the experts explained that technically this was true, but it was a hazard only if someone were to grind it and snort it.

    So now the NY Times will have us believe that the granite and other “radioactive” rock in the drilling fluid will harm us. Did they ever see a stream after heavy storm erosion? That too contains ground up “radioactive” granite otherwise known as sand.

    Shall we outlaw Mother Nature too? Is there really any chance that someone will drink muddy water?

  2. @ James Mace: You, sir, are an idiot. Why is it that people like you always feel compelled to post about things you know absolutely nothing about. The granite countertop issue never went away. It is still an issue to this very day. Ever hear of radon? It is a radioactive noble gas that occurs as a natural decay product of uranium. It is the same radioactive material that is of concern in both the granite counters issue and hydrofracking (among other things). It is also the second leading cause of lung cancer in the US, behind smoking, and causes an estimated 21,000 death a year. Sounds pretty harmless, right?

    Also, as I mentioned earlier, radon is a gas, not a solid. It is not sand dissolved in a stream, and it is not a material you can grind up and snort (although I’m sure snorting things is the reason you are such a moron). Do everyone a favor and STFU (and lay off the model airplane glue)…

    P.S. The problem of radioactivity associated with hydrofracking is only one of a million things to be concerned about. There is also the issue of the dozens of other carcinogens and industrial chemicals that are included in the hydrofracking fluid mix that will be pumped directly into the ground (and the water table), the release of massive amounts of methane, explosions, decreased property values, etc. The problems are endless. And if you think those are trivial concerns as well, then why don’t you move to Dimock, PA or Dish, Texas and see what it’s all about…

  3. Gas companies use chemicals with HIGH SOLUBILITY for gas extraction. My water (unlike ordinary water) has HIGH SOLUBILITY! NO CHEMICALS (that are destroying our water supplies) ARE NEEDED! Thousands of water wells have been returned to purity using my technology. Are profits more important than the future health of generations of our children and grandchildren or are we going to allow them to make a “fast buck” now? I am 81 year old graduate Engineer that questions our future! Go to: watercuresanything.com to learn more! John Ellis

  4. I should have stated, that ONLY 10 gallons of my water are required on each water well to return the well to purity and it lasts for years!! Again, THOUSANDS of water wells have been done! Read an article in the Washington Post as far back as 1/27/92 that describe my water patents! If you go to: watercuresanything.com you will understand why the public should be made aware of how “home water purifiers” are spreading the diseases of former users from PUBLIC water supplies (AP 3/10/08)! John Ellis