Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Breaking: New York bans fracking over health risks

The New York Times reports that the administration of  Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo has decided to ban hydraulic fracturing in New York State because of concerns over health risks, ending years of uncertainty over the controversial method of natural gas extraction.
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo listened to a presentation on fracking
at a cabinet meeting in Albany on Wednesday.
 Credit (AP Photo)
"State officials concluded that fracking, as the method is known, could contaminate the air and water and pose inestimable dangers to public health," Thomas Kaplan and Jesse McKinley reported.  
                        "That conclusion was delivered during a year-end cabinet meeting convened by Mr. Cuomo in Albany. It came amid increased calls by environmentalists to ban fracking, which uses water and chemicals to release natural gas trapped in deeply buried shale deposits."
                The Times called the question of whether to allow fracking "one of the most divisive public policy debates in New York in years, pitting environmentalists against others who saw it as a critical way to bring jobs to economically stagnant portions of upstate."

"Mr. Cuomo, a Democrat who has prided himself on taking swift and decisive action on other contentious issues like gun control, took the opposite approach on fracking," the paper said. "He repeatedly put off making a decision on how to proceed, most recently citing an ongoing — and seemingly never-ending — study by state health officials."
                On Wednesday, six weeks after Mr. Cuomo won re-election to a second term, the long-awaited health study finally materialized.   

Read the full story here
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