“We’re going to do this safely,” stated Joe Martens, Commissioner of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) as he announced the July 8 issuing of the draft Supplemental Generic Environmental Impact Study (dSGEIS) that outlines the proposed permitting conditions for high-volume hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) of horizontal natural gas wells in the state. Included is a ban on drilling in the New York City watershed, of which most of Ulster County is a part. “[We believe] that the only option to ensure protections for all New Yorkers is to ban hydraulic fracturing in New York State,” responded the environmental advocacy group Catskill Mountainkeeper after studying the new version of the SGEIS. While acknowledging that the current draft is an improvement over the 2009 version, Mountainkeeper’s program director Wes Gillingham said there are still major shortcomings in the proposed regulations, and the fracking issue represents “the biggest environmental crisis New York has ever faced.”
Industry giant to invest $1 billion in natural gas; question remain about true profits
NYT February 8, 2011: Tribe’s Plan for Catskill Casino, Backed by Paterson, Faces Rejection in Washington
Tribe’s Plan for Catskill Casino, Backed by Paterson, Faces Rejection in Washington
Published: February 8, 2011A proposed Native American casino on 333 acres in the Catskills is likely to be rejected by federal authorities next week, only three months after Gov. David A. Paterson approved the $560 million project in the waning days of his administration. The former governor signed agreements with the Stockbridge-Munsees, a tribe based in Wisconsin with roots in New York, in November to permit a Las Vegas-style casino near Monticello, about 90 miles from New York City, and to settle the tribe’s land claim to 23,000 acres in upstate Madison County. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/09/nyregion/09casino.html?_r=1&partner=rss&emc=rss
ALBANY — The state Department of Environmental Conservation has issued a new regulation that prohibits the feeding of black bears by people. The regulation stems from the increasing number of conflicted between the big, furry animals and humans.
Previously, the agency prohibited the intentional feeding of bears in proximity to certain locations. The new rule now prohibits the intentional or incidental feeding of bears. That means it is now against the law to leave out garbage, refuse or bird seed that might attract the animals. The regulation gives the agency the authority to require removal of those and other food attractions when bears become problematic.
The agency encourages discontinuing bird feeding activity in the spring when bears emerge from their dens and natural food for bears is not abundant and natural food for birds is becoming more available.
The Central Catskills Collaborative has settled on a name for a 45-mile stretch of state Route 28 that the group hopes will receive a scenic byway designation from New York state....
The editorial board of The New York Times has endorsed State Senator Eric T. Schneiderman, who represents parts of Manhattan and the Bronx, in the Democratic primary for attorney general of New York.
Specifically, the measure (S.8129B) places a moratorium on new fracking permits in the Marcellus Shale and other similar formations until May 15, 2011, “to afford the state and its residents the opportunity to continue the review and analysis of the effects of hydraulic fracturing on water and air quality, environmental safety and public health.” The bill passed on the senate floor at 12:30pm in a 48-9 vote.
Wes Gillingham, the Mountainkeeper Program Director was in Albany on the Senate Floor lobbying for passage of the moratorium at that early hour this morning. We are deeply proud of his efforts and those of our coalition friends, our members and all of you who worked so hard to get this historic bill passed. COME BACK FOR BREAKING NEWS UPDATES ON THIS STORY