The Nation: New York’s Fractivists Keep the Heat on Cuomo

EXCERPT

“It was a NIMBY [Not in My Backyard] issue at the beginning,” says Ramsay Adams, executive director of Catskill Mountainkeeper, one of the first New York groups to raise the alarm. A couple of years ago, Adams asked McKibben to attend a fracking event and the relationship grew from there. By now, a smattering of New York grassroots activists have formed coalitions that are linking groups from across the country.”

New York’s Fractivists Keep the Heat on Cuomo

Nicholas Kusnetz

September 12, 2012   |    This article appeared in the October 1, 2012 edition of The Nation.

On a hot and breezy August morning, more than 1,000 protesters gathered in Albany calling on Governor Andrew Cuomo to ban the drilling practice called hydraulic fracturing in New York State. Activists chanted anti-fracking fight songs and carried banners highlighting the dangers of the gas drilling practice. It was in many ways like the handful of rallies that had come before it.

But there was one subtle difference that tracked a trend in the anti-fracking movement. The first hint came with one of the first speakers: Bill McKibben, the environmental writer and activist who started the grassroots group 350.org to press for action on climate change. Last year, McKibben and his group organized a campaign that took the arcane local issue of an oil pipeline running through Nebraska and turned it into a national story, culminating in one of the environmental movement’s largest acts of civil disobedience ever, when an estimated 10,000 activists circled the White House in a human chain last November. In his speech at the August rally, McKibben called this a “gut-check” moment for Cuomo and suggested that banning fracking would make him a leader on the national, even international stage.
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EU fracking study reports drilling for shale gas poses high risks, worse than those posed by other fossil fuels

Novinite (Bulgaria’s largest English news outlet), September 7, 2012

A new report for the European Union warns that tough new regulations are required for the shale gas industry because of the high risk it poses to human health and the environment.

The EC study, ‘Impacts of shale gas and shale oil extraction on the environment and human health’, the most comprehensive analysis yet of the shale gas sector, says that drilling for shale gas poses “high risks”, worse than those posed by other fossil fuels, EEM reported.

Amongst these is water contamination caused by the hydraulic fracturing of rocks to obtain the gas, known as ‘fracking‘. The report warns that no fracking should be allowed in areas where water is being used to drinking purposes.

Seven other risks are highlighted, including contamination and depletion of ground and surface water, degradation of biodiversity, land, air quality and the danger of earthquakes.  For full article, click here…..

Sean Lennon Speaks Out Against Fracking

New York Times, August 28, 2012

Op Ed Article by Sean Lennon

On the northern tip of Delaware County, N.Y., where the Catskill Mountains curl up into little kitten hills, and Ouleout Creek slithers north into the Susquehanna River, there is a farm my parents bought before I was born. My earliest memories there are of skipping stones with my father and drinking unpasteurized milk. There are bald eagles and majestic pines, honeybees and raspberries. My mother even planted a ring of white birch trees around the property for protection.

A few months ago I was asked by a neighbor near our farm to attend a town meeting at the local high school. Some gas companies at the meeting were trying very hard to sell us on a plan to tear through our wilderness and make room for a new pipeline: infrastructure for hydraulic fracturing. Most of the residents at the meeting, many of them organic farmers, were openly defiant. The gas companies didn’t seem to care. They gave us the feeling that whether we liked it or not, they were going to fracture our little town.   For the full article, click here….