March 11, 2020
Dear Majority Leader Stewart-Cousins and Speaker Heastie,
We, the undersigned environmental, public health, and anti-fracking organizations, ask that you put the existing legislation to ban fracking (S06906 and A09678) in your respective budgets. The fracking ban bill, introduced by Sen. Metzger and Assemblyman Englebright, codifies the state's regulatory ban on fracking that the Department of Environmental Conservation established in 2015.
As you know from your steadfast leadership and support of the fracking ban over the last decade, drilling and fracking result in water contamination, toxic air pollution, many health impacts, and greenhouse gas emissions that are disastrous for the climate, among other adverse impacts. Five years after New York announced a regulatory ban, more than a thousand additional peer-reviewed scientific studies have been published and overwhelmingly confirm the grave public health and environmental risks and harms of fracking.1
Enshrining the fracking ban in law will ensure New Yorkers are protected for generations to come. As the oil and gas industry and the Trump Administration seek to undermine environmental regulations and state rights, this is an important moment for New York to put this crucial protection of our environment and public health into law.
We ask that you put this legislation in the budget to ensure its timely passage. This will be a major environmental accomplishment that ensures New York’s environment and our public health are forever protected from fracking.
Ramsay Adams, Executive Director
Concerned Health Professionals of NY
Kathleen Nolan, MD, MSL, Co-founder
Environmental Advocates of New York
Maureen Cunningham, Senior Director for Clean Water
Food and Water Watch
Alex Beauchamp, Northeast Region Director
Julia Walsh, Campaign Director
Natural Resources Defense Council
Rich Schrader, NY Political Director
New Yorkers Against Fracking
Sandra Steingraber, Ph.D. Co-founder
Physicians for Social Responsibility-NY
Larysa Dyrszka, MD, Member, Steering Committee
Paul Gallay, Executive Director
Sierra Club Atlantic Chapter
Roger Downs, Conservation Director
New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG)
Russ Haven, General Counsel
1.Concerned Health Professionals of NY and Physicians for Social Responsibility. (June 2019). Compendium of Scientific, Medical, and Media Findings Demonstrating Risks and Harms of Fracking (Unconventional Gas and Oil Extraction).