Yesterday, Governor Andrew Cuomo yet again delayed making a decision on whether to allow hydraulic fracturing — fracking — in the state of New York.
Fracking has been under review by state regulators since before Mr. Cuomo took office in January 2011.
In a letter on Tuesday, the state’s health commissioner, Dr. Nirav R. Shah, said that a review by his agency of the potential effects on health from the drilling was continuing, and that the agency needed more time to read newly published reports — including one by the federal Environmental Protection Agency — and that his agency’s report would be ready in “a few weeks.” Shah recommended that the administration not move forward until it was completed.
Without the report, the state will not meet a deadline this month to issue a new environmental impact statement, and that will likely require it to start the regulatory process all over and begin a new 45-day comment period.
Apparently the thorough analysis conducted last year, in which the New York state Health Department found that hydrofracking could be conducted safely in New York, will continue to be ignored by the governor and his administration.
“The unwarranted fear of hypothetical adverse effects from hydraulic fracturing are barring New Yorkers from the benefits — both in terms of energy and economic — of fracking,” says ACSH’s Dr. Gilbert Ross.
For more science-based information on fracking check out our Facebook page Facts about Fracking, which features sound-science information all about hydraulic fracturing. And stay tuned for ACSH’s upcoming special report on fracking and health, which is expected to be released this spring.