What Does the Times' Fracking Report Mean? *Update*
June 30th, 2011
The NY Times is reporting that Gov. Andrew Cuomo will lift a moratorium on the controversial process of extracting natural gas from shale formations called hydrofracking. The administration will reportedly ban the practice in the New York City and Syracuse watersheds.
The Times article cites unnamed sources and the Cuomo administration has called the report “baseless speculation and premature.”
The DEC is currently working on a review of the fracking process and was expected to release its report tomorrow–that was supposed to be followed up with a public comment period–before any decisions were made about the future of fracking. The DEC says it may not make the deadline–it has delayed the report’s release a number of times before. The Times article notes that the time frame for the lifting of the ban is unclear.
*Update* The Post’s Fred Dicker reports that the DEC’s report recommends lifting the fracking band and that environmentalists who are opposed to the recommendations are leaking the document. Dicker has a habit of running clean up for the Cuomo administration. *Update*
In some ways this seems like non news.
However, on a recent episode of The Capitol Pressroom, Ken Adams head of the Empire State Development Corporation discussed the benefits fracking could bring to the state.
“If there is a decision to pursue this, we will, as the leading economic development agency for the state, will do everything we can do to ensure that the greatest economic development is derived from the gas drilling process and all the economic impacts that it leads to,” Adams said.
“If there is a regulatory framework that enables this to happen, then there is significant economic development benefits to the state and we will certainly step up to make sure those benefits are realized to the greatest extent possible.”
Liz Benjamin, who blogged about Adams’ appearance, noted that he was calling the show, “from Washington, DC, where he is trying to convince bio-tech companies to set up shop in New York.
Members of the Cuomo administration certainly seem ready to take advantage of fracking if the DEC and the governor decide to allow it.
Meanwhile, Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has been putting up major resistance to fracking in New York. He recently subpoenaed a number of companies involved in fracking that want to move into New York.By David King on June 30, 2011, 2:17 pm
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