Saturday, September 3, 2011
Thanks Peter for the DEC update
Irene pushes DEC’s hydrofracking report back Posted by: Jon Campbell - Posted in Uncategorized on Aug 31, 2011 A 1,000-plus page draft of a report on the environmental impacts of hydraulic fracturing for natural gas has been pushed back because of Tropical Storm Irene, according to a Department of Environmental Conservation spokeswoman. The report, which DEC Commissioner Joseph Martens said was slated to be released today, will now be unveiled at some point next week, with a public comment period to follow. “DEC continues to be focused on hurricane response and recovery,” DEC spokeswoman Emily DeSantis said in an e-mail. “Therefore, we will release the revised draft SGEIS next week.” The review is called the Supplemental Generic Environmental Impact Statement (SGEIS), and will provide the framework for the DEC’s high-volume hydrofracking permit process, which hasn’t been permitted in New York since the review was started in July 2008. The technique is used with gas drilling to send a high-pressure mix of water, sand and chemicals deep underground to break up shale formations—like the Marcellus Shale—and release natural gas. Most of the DEC’s draft was released in July, but the department said it would install a new chapter on the socioeconomic and community impacts of gas drilling before officially releasing it for public comment. The department had originally set the comment period at 60 days, but said a final decision on the length as well as whether to host public hearings would be announced when the document is released.