NYS Senator Eric Adams joins his Majority Conference colleagues to pass hydrofracking moratorium legislation protecting New York’s watershed during a comprehensive study of the consequences of drilling in the Marcellus Shale
NYS Senator Eric Adams states: “The New York State Senate placed public safety above special interests by passing a moratorium on gas drilling in the Marcellus Shale. We are concerned about the possibility that our State’s water supply might become contaminated by the hazardous chemicals used in the procedure known as hydraulic fracturing, or hydrofracking. The moratorium is designed to protect the health and economic well-being of millions of New Yorkers who draw their water from the affected area.
“Utility rates in New York are among the highest in the nation, placing a heavy burden on the average resident. An increase in available energy resources can reduce costs to New Yorkers and earn revenue for our State. The Marcellus Shale, a rock layer that some geologists predict contains one of the richest natural gas reserves in the United States, extends into New York State and represents us with a unique economic opportunity; it could bring in as much as $1 billion in annual revenue. However, harvesting the natural gas poses a serious environmental challenge.
“Hydrofracking involves drilling down into the shale and then horizontally turning that drill to mine pockets of natural gas. Millions of gallons of water, sand, and chemicals are pumped in under pressure to ‘hydrofracture' the shale and release the natural gas. This water becomes polluted and must be removed; its disposal is a primary and critical matter. Further, the proximity to the watershed that is the source of New York City drinking water presents a grave concern.
“I am committed to maximizing economic growth and creating jobs, but I also am steadfast in my pledge to maintain our environment. To gain my support for hydrofracking, exploratory drilling corporations would be required to initiate systems and measures to capture and secure all impurities or residual waste generated by the process. Any threat to the integrity of the New York City watershed that may compromise the health or wellbeing of residents is intolerable.
“This moratorium is effective through May 15, 2011; it provides the State an opportunity to review fully all potential side effects of this kind of drilling. We must be 100% certain that hydrofracking chemicals will never work their way into our water supply or into our lakes, streams, or rivers.”