By Steve Horn, March 6 2013. Source: DeSmog Blog
Photo: DeSmog Blog
In a roll call vote of 95-40, the New York State Assembly has passed a two-year moratorium on hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”), the toxic horizontal drilling process through which oil and gas is procured that’s found within shale rock basins across the country and the world.
The bill, if passed by the Senate and signed off by Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo, would close the state’s doors to the oil and gas industry’s desire to begin operating in New York’s portion of the Marcellus Shale basin until May 2015. New York has had a moratorium on the books since 2008.
This is the third time the Assembly has passed such a bill, with similar moratorium bills passing in 2010 and 2011, but then dying a slow death in the Senate and never reaching the Governor’s desk, meaning the de facto moratorium has remained in place.
Could the third time be a charm in 2013 in the Empire State? Continue reading
By Lynne Peeples, February 11, 2013. Source: Huffington Post
Brewery Ommegang of upstate New York fills more than 30,000 barrels with beer every year. The primary component of the popular Belgian, wheat and amber ales: water.
That fact, according to Larry Bennett, is why the brewery is part of a fight to keep natural gas fracking out of the town of Middlefield, N.Y.
“If chemicals from fracking get into the water, we’re done,” said Bennett, a spokesman for the Middlefield-based business.
The town is one of four municipalities in New York currently waging court battles defending local bans on hydraulic fracturing, or fracking — the process of injecting pressurized fluids into the ground to fracture shale rock to release natural gas. They face lawsuits from the industry as well as from some landowners. Opponents of the bans see the gas industry as an economic boon and say local bans spoil that potential if Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) lifts New York’s four-and-a-half year moratorium and opens the state to natural gas drilling.