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Sweeney Moratorium Bill (A.11443-B)

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Honorable Sheldon Silver:

We, the undersigned, are writing to urge you to convene a special session of the NY State Assembly to pass the Sweeney Moratorium (A.11443-B) on hydraulic fracturing for oil or natural gas until May 15, 2011, so that public health and safety can be adequately protected. 

Hudson River Sloop Clearwater, Inc. joins many other citizen and environmental groups in thanking you for co-sponsoring this bill that seeks to suspend issuance of permits for hydraulic fracturing (“hydrofracking”), effectively preventing these practices in New York until May 15, 2011, and giving the NY State legislature and the Department of Environmental Conservation more time to review and assess the true environmental and health impacts of horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing.  The NYS Senate recently passed its counterpart, the Thompson bill (S.8129-B), by a 48 to 9 majority; now it is up to the Assembly.

Hydraulic fracturing, or “hydrofracking,” uses large volumes of water containing sand and a proprietary chemical mixture - including known toxins and carcinogens – which are injected into wells at extremely high pressure to fracture bedrock and release and capture natural gas.  Marcellus and Utica shales, which are located in a band that includes parts of the Catskill-Delaware portion of the New York City water supply, are two formations targeted for hydrofracking due to the large quantities of gas trapped within the rocks of these low-permeability reservoirs.

Having recently witnessed the BP Oil Spill, we do not want to incur the disastrous results of lax oversight in our region, especially when cleaner sources of renewable energy and energy efficiency are readily at hand.


cc:  Assemblyman Robert Sweeney, sponsor of A.11443-B
      Assemblyman Kevin Cahill, Chairman of Energy Committee


Hudson River Sloop Clearwater, Inc.


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