fracking

Gas Storage Adds To Fracking Controversy In Upstate

Jul 3, 2013
David Chanatry

It’s something few people think about, but all that natural gas and other fossil fuels being produced by hydrofracking has to be stored somewhere before it gets to the consumer. Often used for the job: underground salt caverns like the ones near Watkins Glen in the Finger Lakes. Now an out of state company wants to expand storage there, a plan some local residents call risky.

Flickr/Linh Do

Gasland, an Oscar nominated documentary, has become an often quoted and viewed source for those opposed to hydraulic fracturing for natural gas in New York and elsewhere, and has been soundly criticized by those who support the drilling.

A new report says U.S. oil and gas reserves are up by about a third - that number rise higher thanks to hydraulic fracturing. The paper released by the Energy Information Administration, the research branch of the U.S. Energy Department, says that reserves of oil and gas that can be developed using current technology are up 35 percent this year from 2011.

Office of Governor Andrew Cuomo

Governor Cuomo, who still has not issued a decision on whether hydro fracking should be allowed in New York,  is backing further away from the controversial gas drilling process in his economic development plans for the future.  

Two years ago, Governor Cuomo considered hydro fracking a key component of his plans for economic development in the faltering upstate regions of the state. 

A key court ruling this week could have far-reaching effects for the future of hydrofracking in New York. WAMC’s Ian Pickus spoke with Gannett capitol reporter Jon Campbell for the latest.

WAMC News

Opponents of hydro fracking are charging there’s a potential conflict of interest with a consultant to Governor Cuomo’s environmental agency. They are asking that the years-long review of fracking in New York be restarted. The controversy caused the consultant in question to sever all ties with a gas industry lobby group.

On Earth Day lobby day at the capitol, whether or not to allow hydrofracking in New York continues to be the dominant issue.

The Senate and Assembly Environmental Committee Chairs both take a dim view of the controversial gas drilling process, but they differ over what’s the next step.

Assembly Environmental Chair Bob Sweeney believes in a clearly legislated moratorium. In fact, the Assembly has already passed one.

“I think it is pretty clear that this is a bad deal not only environmentally,” said Sweeney. “But it’s a bad deal economically too.”

NY Town Board Rescinds Ban on Fracking Talk

Apr 22, 2013
AP Photo

A town in New York’s Southern Tier has rescinded a gag order on public discussion of fracking during town board meetings. Two groups had sued the town, alleging violation of First Amendment rights. The Town Board denies liability.

Office of Governor Andrew Cuomo

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s health commissioner is expected to release a health report on hydraulic fracturing soon, at least according to a timetable announced in late February. But the Cuomo Administration has already missed several deadlines on fracking.

Ben Sklar

One of the most contentious areas of debate over the expansion of hydraulic fracturing for natural gas concerns a spike in seismic activity in unlikely areas that have begun fracking nearby. Some alarmed scientists say containment wells are putting undue pressure on faults deep underground. But industry interests disagree – that is, when they say anything at all.

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