hydrofracking

The Republican candidate challenging Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, Wendy Long, is urging swift action on hydrofracking in New York.

A group of public health experts are questioning whether Governor Andrew Cuomo’s health officials can do a credible job reviewing a health study on hydrofracking, saying independent reviewers would be a better choice.

U.S. Senate candidate Wendy Long is accusing her opponent of not supporting natural gas drilling, which she says would create jobs in New York. Long, a Republican, held a press conference Wednesday in Syracuse to blame Senator Kirsten Gillibrand of delaying its approval.

New York state recently decided to conduct a health review of the controversial natural gas extraction method, hydrofracking. This will likely cause a November deadline to be missed and the public comment period to be re-opened. However, during a visit to Syracuse on Tuesday Governor Cuomo denied that he is stalling the process, saying a delay in the state’s decision on allowing hydrofracking is not a “step back.”

The Cuomo administration has announced two developments that could delay the start of hydrofracking in New York, and is leaving supporters and opponents with many unanswered questions.

Marie Cusick / Innovation Trail

Two Syracuse University geology professors - along with a graduate assistant or two - are hurrying to collect water samples from drinking wells in the Southern Tier before - and if - the natural gas extraction method known as hydraulic fracturing is approved in New York.

Governor Andrew Cuomo says he supports his administration’s internal health review on hydrofracking in New York, and he says it could even hasten the gas drilling process in the state, should fracking ultimately be approved.

Governor Andrew Cuomo’s environmental commissioner announcement that he is rejecting calls for an independent health analysis of hydrofracking has left more questions than answers. Commissioner Joe Martens says he will conduct an internal health review instead.

Governor Andrew Cuomo’s environmental commissioner is rejecting calls by environmentalists for an independent health impact study on hydrofracking. But  Environmental Commissioner Joe Martens, says the state’s health commissioner has agreed to conduct a review.

The natural gas industry sees hopeful signs in a new poll that finds more New Yorkers now support hydrofracking. A Quinnipiac University survey also finds upstate New Yorkers, some who live where the gas drilling process would occur, back fracking in greater numbers.

Matt Richmond / Innovation Trail/WSKG

Shortly after opening its doors at this spring, the Shale Resources and Society Institute (SRSI) ignited a controversy that persists several months later.

The newly-founded SUNY Buffalo institute issued a study which found a decline in accidents and environmental damage caused by hydrofracking – a drilling technique using high volumes of water, sand and chemicals to extract natural gas from shale far below the Earth’s surface.

Opponents call the study flawed and biased in favor of the oil and gas industry.

Marie Cusick / WMHT

Transporting the millions of gallons of water, as well as equipment, sand, and other materials needed to hydraulically fracture a natural gas well requires quite a few truck trips, to put it mildly.

One well site could require up to 3,399 one-way truck trips [PDF], according to the New York Department of Environmental Conservation's 2011 draft environmental impact statement (dSGEIS) on hydrofracking.

All those trips by heavy trucks can quickly beat up and wear out roads if they're not built to handle it.

Marie Cusick / Innovation Trail/WMHT

New York State is poised to issue its final plans for regulating hydrofracking. But even with a decision imminent, there’s no guarantee this controversy will die down.

Instead, the fight will likely head to the courts.

Karen Dewitt / WRVO

Anti-fracking advocates rallied in Albany Monday to try to convince Governor Andrew Cuomo to ban the natural gas drilling process in New York state.  Meanwhile, a state Senator says he believes any final decision will be once again delayed.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO

Whenever Governor Andrew Cuomo goes out in public these days, he seems to have a shadow. Hydrofracking foes want to keep the pressure on the governor as a decision about the controversial drilling method nears.

Ellen Abbott/WRVO

As Governor Andrew Cuomo opened the New York State Fair in Syracuse today, every step he took on the fairgrounds was dogged by protesters opposed to hydrofracking.

Groups for and against hydrofracking are gearing up for an announcement by Governor Andrew Cuomo’s environmental officials  on whether the natural gas drilling process will be permitted in New York on a limited basis. But, the organizations, who are running ads, may have to wait a little longer.

Matt Richmond / WSKG

The natural gas industry has responded quickly to a report we did last week on a new study looking at the potential harm from fracking wastewater treatment and removal.

The Innovation Trail spoke with John Krohn, Communications Director for Energy in Depth, an education and outreach arm of the Independent Petroleum Association of America.

Krohn wrote a lengthy critique of Stony Brook University's report that can be read here.

Matt Richmond / WSKG

A new study on managing wastewater produced by hydraulic fracturing finds the biggest risk of contamination to drinking water supplies occurs during the disposal process.

The report is by Stony Brook University and was published this month in the journal "Risk Analysis."

Karen Dewitt / WRVO

The Republican candidate for US Senate, Wendy Long, is describing herself as pro-hydrofracking, for entitlement reform and focused on beating her opponent. Long spoke with reporters in Albany Monday and talked about everything from Paul Ryan to tort reform.

Governor Andrew Cuomo offered some support to a plan to permit hydrofracking in New York in communities that welcome the gas drilling process.

Supporters and opponents of a plan to allow limited hydrofracking in New York’s Southern Tier region confronted each other at the state Capitol .

For months, the Cuomo administration has been signaling that it might permit the gas drilling process known as hydrofracking in a few areas in the Marcellus Shale region where the majority of people in communities want the gas drilling process to begin.

In a New York Times article published Wednesday, a plan for the first stage of hydrofracking in New York state was laid out by members of the Cuomo administration. But in a radio interview Thursday, Governor Andrew Cuomo himself was reluctant to actually call it a plan.

Matt Richmond/Innovation Trail

The fate of hydraulic fracturing in New York is still being determined by state regulators.

But that doesn’t mean municipalities aren’t taking action.

Alec Baldwin pays a visit to Syracuse

Jun 4, 2012
Matt Johnston / WRVO

Syracuse got a taste of star power this past weekend as television and film star Alec Baldwin stopped by the Landmark Theater.

Baldwin was there to host a showing of the film “Gasland,” an award-winning anti-hydrofracking documentary.

He also moderated a panel after the movie with experts opposed to hydrofracking and members of the community to discuss the issue. Hydrofracking has been banned in New York while the state reviews concerns over the process for drilling natural gas.

Karen Dewitt

Around 300 anti-fracking protestors rallied inside the capitol building in Albany Tuesday.

It was part of a day-long effort to convince the state to continue its ban against the controversial process of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, for gas in New York.

A new report from Environmental Advocates of New York is questioning the state's regulation of wastewater from oil and gas wells. The study is based on about 100 drilling applications filed with the Department of Environmental Conservation.

Karen Dewitt

Anti-fracking groups presented Governor Andrew Cuomo with 200,000 signatures asking for a ban on the gas drilling process in New York,  and a state senator predicts  the opposition will  have an effect on the governor.

arimoore via Flickr; taken by Attorney Helen Slottje

Earth Day came and went in New York  without too much discussion of what many environmentalists believe to be the biggest issue facing the state- when and where the gas drilling process known as hydrofracking will  occur.

Skaneateles undecided about hydraulic fracturing

Apr 20, 2012
ltmayers via Flickr

The Finger Lakes are buzzing these days with the debate on hydro-fracking and many communities want it banned.  Thursday night the town of Skaneateles held a public forum to give residents the chance to speak their minds about a proposed law to prohibit the controversial process for natural gas drilling.

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