OPPORTUNITIES TO STOP CUOMO'S FRACKING EXPRESS ARE DIMINISHING
Today, Mountainkeeper is sending you alot of information that is important to read
Below you will find several actions you need to take
Mobilize Now! Demonstrate That New Yorkers Can’t Be Railroaded
Governor Cuomo is showing a strong determination to make fracking a reality in New York State and begin issuing drilling permits in the second quarter of 2012. The Governor’s latest tactic is to suppress the ability of the State’s citizenry to make public comment on the recently published draft Supplemental Generic Impact Statement (dSGEIS) and the regulations issued on September 28th, that codify the permit conditions under which drilling will be allowed in New York State into law. The public comment has been limited to only 90 days on the dSGEIS and less than that on the regulations. There are only four scheduled public hearings on both documents and the available time per speaker is expected to be limited to only three minutes.
Considering the importance of this decision, the amount of reliable science that indicates severe risk to public health due to threats to our water, air and land, the length of the documents for which testimony is being generated, the devastation that has been wreaked upon the public in next door Pennsylvania and many other factors – it is clear that the Governor and the DEC are not interested in hearing the public’s sentiment or collecting expert testimony. They have apparently already made up their minds that the potential for increased tax revenue from fracking is more important than the public’s health and have decided to squelch public sentiment.
As an example of this tactic, at the meeting held on September 22nd by the New York City Council’s Committee of Environmental Protection on the dSGEIS and NYC’s Water Supply, when Committee Chair James Gennaro was asked on the record if the Governor had attempted to prevent this meeting, he responded by saying “Yes, they did not want this hearing to happen, but we’re doing it anyway.”
Further, when the gas drilling regulations were released, Councilman Gennaro had harsh criticism for the DEC on their process, “The regulations released today are, essentially, the illegitimate progeny of the DEC’s fatally-flawed draft Supplemental Generic Environmental Impact Statement which was completed a mere three weeks ago. In a legitimate environmental regulatory process, the environmental impact statement (EIS) – which is supposed to inform the drafting of environmental regulations – is finalized before the drafting of regulations is commenced.”
Here’s where you come in. It’s critical that our representatives and the press see the largest and most motivated crowds possible at all of the public forums that are taking place over the next weeks and months. Please participate in and attend as many of these events as you can.
This Thursday, October 6th, the Environmental Conservation Committee chaired by Robert Sweeney will hold the first public forum in Albany that will take a critical look at the dSGEIS. It may be the only time that DEC representatives will be questioned about the permit conditions and regulations. Please attend if you can, but also, please call your state representative to ask them to attend and question the DEC about the major flaws in the dSGEIS. Click here for the time and location of the hearing and to get the phone number of your state representative.
Major Flaws in the dSGEIS
The DEC has scheduled 4 public hearings on the dSGEIS. They are in Dansville, NY on November 16, Binghamton, NY on November 17, Loch Sheldrake, NY on November 29 and New York City on November 30. A huge public presence is especially important at these meetings. Please attend as many of them as you can. Click here for times and locations.
Please take these additional actions and let the Governor and the DEC hear what the people of New York feel about their plans before it is too late:
1. Forward this message to your friends, family and neighbors and ask them to forward it on. Get educated, especially about the health issues and threats. Please use the Catskill Mountainkeeper website as a resource.
2. Sign our petition to ask Governor Cuomo and DEC Commissioner Martens to extend the comment period to 180 days.
3. Help Catskill Mountainkeeper to continue to help you. Leading this fight is an expensive undertaking. In addition to travel, research, staff time and public outreach we are now gearing up for the legal fight, the next step. Please give generously.
or mail a check to: Catskill Mountainkeeper, PO Box 381, Youngsville, NY 12791
About Catskill Mountainkeeper
Catskill Mountainkeeper is an independent, not for profit, 501c3 community based environmental advocacy organization, dedicated to creating a flourishing sustainable economy in the Catskills and preserving and protecting the area's long term health. We address issues of water integrity for the Delaware and Susquehanna River Systems, the defense of the vast woodlands that encompass the Catskill Forest Preserve and the New York City Watershed as well as farmland protection. We promote "smart" development that balances the economic needs and concerns of the Catskill regions' citizens and the protection of our abundant but exceedingly vulnerable natural resources.