It looks like the big push for public comments before Governor Cuomo’s hydraulic fracturing deliberations last week paid off. The new state budget doesn’t mention paying hydrofracking regulators, a necessary expense in going ahead with drilling in the Delaware River Basin, reports the Star Gazette.
Last week, environmental groups were up at arms over whether New York state’s three year fracking ban would end if Cuomo and company could find a proper way to regulate the practice. An estimated 40,000 public comments were submitted by Wednesday, many of which most likely dealt with fracking’s terrible track record for contaminating people’s drinking water with methane, released by shooting jets of pressurized fracking fluid into subterranean Marcellus Shale rock to release natural gas.
It’s a “chicken and the egg” situation, Cuomo said.
“You would not be hiring staff to regulate hydrofracking unless you believed you were going ahead with hydrofracking,” Cuomo said. “And we haven’t made that determination. So the budget won’t anticipate hydrofracking approval.” [Star Gazette]
Whew, guess that buys us some time to appreciate our free, NYC tap water just that much more. No way I’m going to start buying that bottled stuff from Hawaii or France or the top of Mount Olympus or whatever.
Follow Sydney Brownstone on Twitter @sydbrownstone