A Clash Over Gas Drilling in New York

To the Editor: For years, the natural gas industry has misled the public into believing that we can tap vast stores of cheap energy from shale. Upon that false promise, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo now suggests that we lift the temporary state ban on hydraulic fracturing. Fracking is a dangerous, destructive and unsustainable way to extract gas from shale. Lifting the ban would expose our workers, our families and our waters to needless risk. And for what?

As The Times reported in its “Drilling Down” series, gas companies have systematically inflated production estimates and lowballed cost projections to make fracking look more attractive to investors, regulators and policy makers. Members of Congress have asked for an investigation. The attorney general of New York has started an inquiry. This is no time to lift the fracking ban; it’s time to make it permanent. That’s the way to protect our workers and waters and to safeguard the resources that belong to us all. RAMSAY ADAMS Livingston Manor, N.Y., July 1, 2011 The writer is executive director of Catskill Mountainkeeper, an environmental advocacy organization in western New York. Permalink

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