For Immediate Release

Organization Profile: 

Lauren Wright, 202-683-4929; lwright (at)

New York Governor Weakens Regulation of Controversial Hydraulic Fracturing (Fracking) in New York State; State Legislature First to Propose Ban on Fracking

Statement by Wenonah Hauter, Executive Director, Food & Water Watch

WASHINGTON - “This weekend, despite the wishes of the New York State
Legislature, New York Governor David Paterson vetoed legislation
that would have put a moratorium on vertical and horizontal
hydraulic drilling, a controversial practice known as fracking.
Bowing to industry interests, the governor instead issued an
executive order placing a weaker moratorium on horizontal
fracking alone.

While the state of New York must be commended for being the
first in the nation to take this critical step in banning
fracking, the out-going governor’s decision makes little sense
for consumers and the environment, as both horizontal
and vertical fracking utilize toxic chemicals that can cause
contamination of our drinking water, and both can release underground gases, which can lead to dangerous explosions.


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Unfortunately, Paterson’s moratorium, which lasts until July
of 2011, will expire before the 2012 release of a
much-anticipated EPA study, the first of its kind, on the safety
of fracking. It is therefore our hope that incoming
Governor-elect Andrew Cuomo will strengthen the moratorium when
he takes office, lengthening the ban and broadening it to
include all forms of fracking.

Unfortunately, Governor Paterson is not alone in advancing
fracking. The Delaware River Water Basin Commission (DRWBC),
also tasked with protecting public resources and safety,
exhibited their willingness to negotiate with industry last week
by drafting regulations that would allow fracking to expand in
Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York.”


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Food & Water Watch is a nonprofit consumer organization that works to ensure clean water and safe food. We challenge the corporate control and abuse of our food and water resources by empowering people to take action and by transforming the public consciousness about what we eat and drink.

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