NYS Senator Eric Adams Criticizes Governor’s Veto Of Bill To Protect New York’s Environment And Its Water Supply

Eric Adams

December 13, 2010

NYS Senator Eric Adams joins his Majority Conference colleagues to protest the Governor’s veto of hydrofracking moratorium legislation protecting New York’s watershed

NYS Senator Eric Adams states: “Concerned that our State’s water supply might become contaminated by the hazardous chemicals used in the procedure known as hydraulic fracturing, or hydrofracking, the New York State Legislature placed public safety above special interests by passing moratorium legislation on gas drilling in the Marcellus Shale. The moratorium had been designed to protect the health and economic well-being of millions of New Yorkers who draw their water from the affected area, and the Governor’s veto is most unfortunate.

“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. Our utility rates are among the highest in the nation, and an increase in available energy resources could reduce costs to New Yorkers and earn revenue for our State. 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; any threat to the integrity of the New York City watershed that may compromise the health or wellbeing of residents is intolerable. The legislature had incorporated expert input into a moratorium that sought to provide the State with an opportunity to review fully all potential side effects of this kind of drilling and be 100% certain that hydrofracking chemicals would never work their way into our water supply or into our lakes, streams, or rivers.

“The Governor’s veto was accompanied by an Executive order that is meaningfully weaker than our moratorium legislation; it fails to safeguard access to a safe and healthy water supply and jeopardizes the well-being of millions of New Yorker citizens.

I oppose the Governor’s veto.”