New Yorkers Against Fracking Condemns Cuomo Administration Plan to Allow ‘Limited’ Drilling
For Immediate Release:
June 13, 2012
For more information:
Mandela Jones, 646-200-5316, email@example.com
Yorkers Against Fracking Condemns Cuomo Administration Plan to Allow ‘Limited’
New Yorkers Against Fracking, a
coalition of diverse organizations that oppose fracking, issued the following
statement in response to the news that Governor
Cuomo was considering allowing fracking in a few counties.
"Sending a polluting industry
into our most economically impoverished communities is a violation of
environmental justice," said New Yorkers Against Fracking founder Sandra
Steingraber, Ph.D., a biologist and Distinguished Scholar in Residence at
Ithaca College. Steingraber notes that at least one Southern Tier
community is already struggling with excess cancer rates and birth defects as a
result of past boom-and-bust industrial practices that have left plumes of
contaminated groundwater in their wake.
"The pregnant mother who drinks
unfiltered water from a rural well in the Susquehanna River valley has the same
right to environmental protection as the mother in Manhattan who drinks
unfiltered water brought to her from the off-limits New York City watershed,
" said Steingraber.
"Partitioning our state
into frack and no-frack zones based on economic desperation is a shameful idea,
and we will actively oppose its implementation. Demonstration projects are
another name for sacrifice zones. And there are no children and counties
in our beloved state that we are willing to sacrifice."
About Hydraulic Fracking:
High volume hydraulic fracturing,
combined with horizontal drilling, involves pumping millions of gallons of
water, chemicals and sand underground to extract natural gas from shale
bedrock. Multiple studies show how inherently dangerous it is. Most New
Yorkers are wary of fracking. A recent Cornell poll found a
majority of New Yorkers oppose legalizing fracking due to its potential to
contaminate New York’s watersheds with carcinogens and other toxicants.
With or without regulations in
place, fracking is a menace to public health. It lays down blankets of
smog, fills roadway with trucks hauling hazardous materials, sends sediment
into streams, and generates immense quantities of radioactive, carcinogen-laced
waste for which no fail-safe disposal options exist.
Since fracking began in states
outside of New York, there have been more than a thousand reports of
water contamination. New studies link fracking-related activities to
contaminated groundwater, air pollution, illness, death and reproductive problems
in cows, horses and wildlife, and most recently human health problems. A recent
study from the Colorado School of Public Health found that those living within
a half-mile of a natural gas drilling site faced greater health risks than
those who live farther away.
New York has seen a surge of local
fracking bans enacted across the state Overall, over 100 towns and
counties have enacted bans or moratoria in New York
State. Almost one hundred more municipalities are also
considering or staging a ban or moratorium. In recent months, Buffalo, the second largest
city in New York, and Niagara Falls both passed resolutions calling for
Governor Cuomo and the state legislature to pass a statewide ban on fracking.
About New Yorkers Against Fracking
New Yorkers Against Fracking, is a new coalition
of diverse organizations that support a fracking ban, are joining together to
tell Governor Cuomo and our leaders in Albany to stand up for New Yorkers to
keep our water and our state safe by banning hydrofracking.
Founding members of New Yorkers Against Fracking include
statewide and national organizations like Citizen Action of New York,
New York State Breast Cancer Network, Food & Water Watch, Catskill
Mountainkeeper, Frack Action, Water Defense, the Working Families Party joining
with local grassroots anti-fracking groups and business in each part of the
state such as Brewery Ommegang, Frack-Free Catskills and Fingerlakes
Clean Waters Initiative and many more. The full list of over 100
organizations can be found at:http://www.nyagainstfracking.org/members.
Sandra Steingraber, Ph.D., author,
biologist, advocate and recent winner of the prestigious Heinz Award for her
life's work, donated a significant portion of her award to help prevent
fracking in New York – providing the seed money for this effort.
Diagnosed with cancer in her youth, Steingraber is a central voice in the fight
against fracking and has devoted her career to understanding the ways in which
chemical contaminants in air, water and food endanger human health.
Sandra will serve as an honorary
member of the New Yorkers Against Fracking advisory committee. Joining Sandra
as honorary advisory committee members will be Niagara native, former Love
Canal resident and founder of Center for Health, Environment and JusticeLois
Gibbs and outspoken anti-fracking advocate and upstate resident and
actor Mark Ruffalo, co-founder of Water Defense.