Friday, December 17, 2010

Local Pols Upset Over Paterson Hydrofracking Veto By Matthew Hampton - Forest Hills, NY Patch

Executive Order to Prevent Drilling Not Good Enough, Addabbo Says

State Sen. Joe Addabbo, D-South Ozone Park, blasted Gov. David Paterson on Wednesday morning for his dismissal of a hydrofracking moratorium that had passed both the state Assembly and Senate.
Paterson vetoed the bill, which passed the state Senate earlier this month, and instead signed an executive order banning the process through June 2011.

Addabbo's concern, he said, is that an executive order can be easily reversed by the incoming Cuomo administration as early as January.
"Over the weekend, instead of signing this hydrofracking moratorium bill approved by both the Assembly and the Senate, the Governor chose to veto the bill," Addabbo said. "He issued an Executive Order instead, which does not fully protect the millions of New Yorkers whose access to a safe and healthy water supply could be jeopardized."
The city's water comes from upstate aquifers, which are affected by multitudes of environmental factors. For years, New York City has enjoyed a reputation for having quality drinking water despite its status as a mega-city.
Now, Addabbo said, the upstate reservoirs that provide the city's water could be adversely affected.
"Just imagine that your son or daughter pours themselves a cup of water, and it's brown. Or it's cloudy with particles and chemicals. That is exactly what is happening to families in other states--Texas, Colorado, and Pennsylvania--who have rushed into drilling for natural gas with a procedure known as hydrofracking," Addabbo said.
Hydrofracking became an issue during the gubernatorial debates in October. While the candidates were split on the issue, Cuomo said it could be a potential job-creator for the state, and refused to say whether he would support it or not, only saying the procedure had to be proven safe for him to get behind it.
Assemblyman Andrew Hevesi, D-Forest Hills, was also in favor of the state's moratorium on the subject, saying earlier this month that a moratorium on the procedure would "remove any 'time pressure' and allow DEC to do its job correctly."