fracking

  Over the past decade a new and controversial energy extraction method known as hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, has rocketed to the forefront of U.S. energy production. With fracking, millions of gallons of water, dangerous chemicals, and sand are injected under high pressure deep into the earth, fracturing hard rock to release oil and gas.

Wenonah Hauter, one of the nation’s leading public interest advocates, argues that the rush to fracking is dangerous to the environment and treacherous to human health. Frackopoly describes how the fracking industry began; the technologies that make it possible; and the destruction and poisoning of clean water sources and the release of harmful radiation from deep inside shale deposits, creating what the author calls “sacrifice zones” across the American landscape.

Climate activists from near and from as far as Maine, Quebec and central Pennsylvania are converging on downtown Albany for a day of protests against fossil fuels.

  Acclaimed New York Times bestselling author Jennifer Haigh returns to the Pennsylvania town at the center of her iconic novel Baker Towers in Heat & Light, an ambitious, achingly human story of modern America and the conflicting forces at its heart—a bold, moving drama of hope and desperation, greed and power, big business and small-town families.

Forty years ago, Bakerton coal fueled the country. Then the mines closed, and the town wore away like a bar of soap. Now Bakerton has been granted a surprise third act: it sits squarely atop the Marcellus Shale, a massive deposit of natural gas.

Jennifer Haigh will be at Odyssey Bookshop in South Hadley, MA tonight at 7 p.m.

Opponents of a planned fracked gas power plant in the Hudson Valley say they are hoping the US Attorney will investigate decisions made in the permitting process for the plan, now that it’s been revealed that the wife of a former top aide to Cuomo took payments from the lead engineering firm in the project, and that her husband is the subject of a federal probe.

Last week, the world’s leaders gathered on Earth Day to formally agree to the climate change deal hammered out last December.  While there are still lots of questions about how effective the global agreement will be in limiting the damage from planetary warming, one message is clear; the world has got to move away from relying on fossil fuels – coal, oil and gas – to generate energy.

  In How to Let Go of the World and Love All The Things Climate Can't Change, Oscar Nominated director Josh Fox continues in his personal style, investigating climate change. Traveling to 12 countries on 6 continents, the film acknowledges that it may be too late to stop some of the worst consequences and asks, what is it that climate change can’t destroy? What is so deep within us that no calamity can take it away?

Josh Fox is best known as the writer/director of Gasland Parts I and II. He is internationally recognized as a spokesperson and leader on the issue of fracking and extreme energy development. Gasland premiered at the Sundance Film Festival 2010 and was nominated for the 2011 Academy Award for best documentary.

There will be a Woodstock Film Festival screening of How to Let Go of the World and Love All The Things Climate Can't Change and a Q&A with director Josh Fox this Wednesday March 16th @ 6PM at Onteora High School in Boiceville, the event is part of The Let Go and Love tour.

pipeline
loe.org

We’re looking back at some of the stories that dominated 2015 this week — especially the proposed construction of natural gas pipelines. The building of two controversial pipelines could be held up for a year if environmental approvals fail to materialize on time.

Pipeline Map
Kinder Morgan

Kinder Morgan ramped up efforts to educate communities about a pipeline project that would move fracked natural gas across the Northeast.

Matt Rourke / AP

  If you thought fracking of any kind would never happen in New York State after Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s administration officially banned large-scale hydraulic fracturing on June 29, think again. A proposal to frack for natural gas using gelled propane and sand was announced Wednesday in the Southern Tier.


© Copyright K A and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

Now that New York state's Department of Environmental Conservation has officially banned hydrofracking, officials in Schoharie County would like the state to take a closer look at natural gas pipelines and compressor stations.

WAMC News

New York has formalized its ban on high-volume hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, for natural gas after a seven-year environmental and health review.

© Copyright K A and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

New York regulators have released the final version of an environmental impact review of shale gas development that's expected to lead to a state ban on fracking.

David Nightingale: On Energy Independence

May 3, 2015

Let's look at the idea of Energy Independence, and the possibility of no further need for filling the coffers of sometimes unstable fuel-producing nations.

  New York made national headlines by banning hydraulic fracturing.

In today’s Congressional Corner, Union College political science professor Brad Hays tells WAMC’s Alan Chartock that Governor Cuomo’s ban could be a trendsetter.

WAMC photo by Dave Lucas

When New York became the second state in the nation (after Vermont)  to ban the controversial gas drilling method hydraulic fracturing, some were surprised that Governor Andrew Cuomo finally took a stance on the issue.

The fracking announcement December 17th came after six years of a de facto moratorium with a long-awaited health impact study. New York State acting Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker, who said “I cannot support high volume hydraulic fracturing in the great state of New York.”

A six-year de facto moratorium defined by passionate protests, lawsuits and fierce lobbying came to a conclusion with Wednesday’s announcement by the Cuomo administration’s health and environmental conservation commissioners that they would not allow hydraulic fracturing to go forward in New York. Few people have covered the fracking wars as closely as reporter Jon Campbell, who covers the capitol for Gannett. Campbell was at the key cabinet meeting and tells WAMC’s Ian Pickus several questions about the decision remain unanswered.

HV Congressman Speaks To NY Fracking Ban

Dec 18, 2014
Capital District Against Fracking

A Hudson Valley congressman is weighing in with his view of Wednesday’s decision from top state administration officials to ban fracking in New York.

Governor Andrew Cuomo’s administration is banning hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, in New York, citing concerns about health and environmental risks. Democratic Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney says his views on the issue have not changed.

NY Fracking Ban Decision Elicits Different Reactions

Dec 18, 2014

It will probably go down as the biggest decision of the year in New York State – a ban on fracking. Wednesday’s news came the same day casino license recommendations were announced. Supporters of a fracking ban are celebrating the long-awaited decision while opponents say they are disappointed and the Southern Tier, where fracking would have taken place, is doomed.

12/18/14 Panel

Dec 18, 2014

    The Roundtable Panel: a daily open discussion of issues in the news and beyond.

Today's panelists are WAMC's Alan Chartock, investigative journalist Rosemary Armao, and Associate Editor of the Times Union, Mike Spain.

Topics include Cuba, Fracking, and NY Casinos.

Karen DeWitt

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo's administration will move to prohibit fracking in the state, citing unresolved health issues and dubious economic benefits of the widely used gas-drilling technique.

Environmental Commissioner Joe Martens said Wednesday that he is recommending a ban. Cuomo says he is deferring to Martens and Acting Health Commissioner Howard Zucker in making the decision.

Zucker and Martens on Wednesday summarized the findings of their environmental and health reviews. They concluded that shale gas development using high-volume hydraulic fracturing carried unacceptable risks that haven't been sufficiently studied.

Capital District Against Fracking

  It’s looking less and less likely that state Senators and Assemblymembers will get a pay raise as a holiday present this year, but Governor Andrew Cuomo and lawmakers still have a number of issues they need to resolve before the year ends, ranging from the siting of gambling casinos to how to close a Thruway deficit and whether to go ahead with hydro-fracking.

WAMC photo by Dave Lucas

Health professionals and scientists are out with two new independent summations of the risks and harms of shale gas development and hydraulic fracturing. The two documents were formally released Thursday at the Legislative Office Building in downtown Albany.

Election Over, Will Cuomo Decide on Fracking?

Nov 7, 2014

Now that elections are over, supporters and opponents of hydrofracking are wondering what will be Governor Andrew Cuomo’s next move on the long-stalled gas drilling process in New York State.

  What’s the future of fracking in New York?

In today’s Congressional Corner, New York representative Paul Tonko tells WAMC’s Alan Chartock that the country needs to look beyond fossil fuels.

Cuomo: Fracking Studies By End Of Year

Oct 23, 2014
Capital District Against Fracking

During Wednesday’s only gubernatorial debate in New York, Governor Andrew Cuomo said that the long-awaited health review on potential dangers of hydrofracking will be completed by the end of the year.

Capital District Against Fracking

New York's highest court has rejected an attempt by the oil and gas industry to revive its fight against local fracking bans.

In a precedent-setting decision last June, the Court of Appeals ruled that communities have the right to use local land-use authority to prohibit oil and gas operations within their borders. On Thursday, the court denied a motion by the trustee for bankrupt Norse Energy to reargue its case against the town of Dryden.

WAMC, Allison Dunne

Zephyr Teachout will be among those at a rally in Westchester Saturday to call on New York Governor Andrew Cuomo to ban fracking.

Fordham University Law School Professor Zephyr Teachout, who lost to Governor Cuomo in the Democratic primary, will march with White Plains Mayor Thomas Roach and Westchester residents from Renaissance Plaza to city hall in White Plains. A rally follows. Stephen Gyetko is with New Yorkers Against Fracking.

Environmental Working Group

Hydraulic fracturing is responsible for a surge in domestic production of natural gas. Although the contentious process is in political limbo in New York, several upstate counties may be virgin ground for the mining of what's called "frac sand."

Activists may be breathing sighs of relief that the Empire State doesn't appear to be close to resolving whether or not it will allow hydrofracking, but environmentalists are warning New Yorkers they may have trouble breathing, if mining companies start digging for the silica sand needed by drillers for the fracking process.

Composite Image by Dave Lucas (WAMC)

A Yale University study has found people living within the shadows of natural gas wells and hydrofracking pads exhibit higher instances of health problems. The study of Pennsylvania residents comes days after New York Governor Andrew Cuomo promised to visit a gas drilling site in the Keystone State.

The Yale study of people in southwestern Pennsylvania found a greater prevalence of health symptoms reported among residents living close to natural gas wells, including those drilled via hydraulic fracturing.

Governor Cuomo Votes In Westchester

Sep 9, 2014
WAMC, Allison Dunne

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo today stopped by his Westchester town to cast his vote in the Democratic primary for governor and lieutenant governor. As WAMC’s Hudson Valley Bureau Chief Allison Dunne reports, the governor only recently began campaigning against his upstart opponent.

Governor Andrew Cuomo and his partner Sandra Lee cast their votes in the Democratic primary election. Cuomo’s message upon departing the polling site inside the Presbyterian Church of Mount Kisco was:

“Vote, vote, vote, vote, vote,” Cuomo says.

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