One day after Gov. Andrew Cuomo suggested pro-fracking groups are misusing their time, a major New York gas-industry trade group is at the Capitol for its annual lobbying day.
The Independent Oil & Gas Association of New York’s members have more than 100 meetings scheduled with lawmakers and state officials on Monday, according to a spokesman. They come as the state Legislature is weighing a firm moratorium on hydraulic fracturing and shale-gas drilling and a day after Health Commissioner Nirav Shah said he will issue his fracking recommendations in the “next few weeks.”
(The lobby day, it should be noted, was scheduled prior to Cuomo’s Monday comments, when he told Gannett’s Albany Bureau that landowners’ consultants and pro-fracking groups “would be better advised to spend their time actually getting out information to allay the fears of the people of this state than worrying about hallway chatter.”)
IOGA on Monday also took issue with a bill introduced by Sen. David Carlucci, D-Clarkstown, Rockland County, which would prohibit large-scale hydrofracking for two years or the completion of outside studies by Geisinger Health System, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and/or the University of Pennsylvania.
In a letter to Carlucci, IOGA Executive Director Brad Gill said Carlucci has been “profoundly misinformed about these issues.”
“As of this date, New York’s moratorium on the development of natural gas resources has lasted 4 years, 7 months, and 8 days,” Gill wrote. “I doubt you would countenance a delay this long on a matter affecting private property owners and local companies in your own district.”
Last week, Carlucci said when it comes to hydrofracking, the more data, the better.
“I think the important thing is we need to put New Yorkers’ health first and I think the prudent thing to do would be to wait for these studies to be done, get the science on the table and get all the data possible,” Carlucci said.