Last week New York Senator Greg Ball the Cortlandt Town Board meeting and spoke about hydraulic fracturing, also known as hydrofracking, among several other issues. Ball had just left a tour of Pennsylvania farms negatively affected by fracking, a method of natural gas drilling that many environmentalists say causes air, water and soil pollution and poses health risks to both humans and animals. HBO Filmmaker Josh Fox, director of GASLAND, led Ball on the tour and will be speaking aton the issue tomorrow.
Following the tour the senator released a statement critical of hydrofracking, which called for public policies to protect the health and welfare of the public and environment.
Cortlandt town officials are opposed to hydrofracking in the area and passed a resolution in opposition to a New York State Assembly Bill with respect to water use by the fracking industry in April. The Town also had an anti-fracking sign in front of Town Hall until a resident emailed Supervisor Linda Puglisi objecting to the sign and she agreed to move it inside, according to the resident who objected.
The hydrofracking method originated in 1947 and involves pumping large amounts of “fracking fluid”—comprised of fresh water, sand and chemicals—into wells drilled into the ground to release natural gas. The process requires the clearing of about five acres of land—or 3500 trees—per well and three to eight million gallons of fresh water to create enough pressure to release the gas.
While environmentalists, Cortlandt town officials and other anti-fracking groups protest the method, gas and oil industry officials say fracking provides hundreds of jobs and desperately needed revenue for economically-depressed region of southern New York. That area sits on the Marcellus Shale, which has been referred to as the “Saudi Arabia” of natural gas.
To learn more or voice your opinion you can attend Sen. Ball’s public hearing on hydrofracking. The hearing is on Tuesday, Aug. 23, from 9:30 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. there will be a public hearing on hydrofracking, hosted by Sen. Ball, at the Katonah Village Library, The Garden Room, 26 Bedford Road, Katonah, N.Y. 10536
Where do you stand on the issue of hydrofracking?