Like Mayor Bloomberg before him, de Blasio advocates positions that reflect his stance on health related issues, but are not science-based. Although he has announced that his purview is the five boroughs, as noted in the New York Post, Mayor de Blasio has stepped into the upstate hydraulic fracturing (fracking) controversy, using as his excuse that it will endanger the city s water supply. Based on what evidence, we d like to know?
In fact, fracking in the Marcellus Shale formation in upstate New York is not a danger to New York City s drinking water. The deposits of natural gas that are found in such formations are thousands of feet below the aquifer, and aren t going to impact them. Hydraulic fracturing has been used for decades in the American southwest without contaminating anyone s drinking water, despite what various scaremongers would have us believe. And no, there haven t really been cases of people lighting their taps on fire because of fracking in the vicinity those episodes have been confirmed to be due to natural methane in the local groundwater unrelated to drilling (but the makers of Gasland will never acknowledge this inconvenient fact).
ACSH s Dr. Gilbert Ross commented When Mayor Bloomberg left office, I hoped we d seen the last of mayors who wanted to impose their personal, biased, and unscientific beliefs on the city. Unfortunately, that doesn t seem to be the case. Better luck next time.