Wednesday, July 24, 2013
NY Landowners Angered Over 5 Year Hydraulic Fracturing Moratorium
July 23, 2013 – Binghamton, NY— The Joint Landowners Coalition of New York (JLCNY) issued the following statement regarding the 5 year anniversary of New York’s moratorium on high-volume hydraulic fracturing (HVHF). The Joint Landowners Coalition of New York and our 77,000 landowners are extremely disappointed that our state has not been able to complete the SGEIS for hydraulic fracturing after 5 years. Today, Upstate NY state and local elected officials joined the members of the JLCNY to call on our state to complete the SGEIS and move forward with natural gas development now. Our communities have been waiting long enough. Our nation’s leaders are bringing us closer than ever to achieving energy independence, cleaner air and economic prosperity while NY drags its feet, impeding our progress and denying the constitutionally guaranteed rights of NY landowners. US Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell recently said: “As the President has made clear, this administration’s priority is to continue to expand safe and responsible domestic energy production”. Approximately 90 percent of wells drilled on Federal and Indian lands use hydraulic fracturing. “We know from experience that hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling methods can be used safely and effectively . . . . ” said Bureau of Land Management Principal Deputy Director Neil Kornze.http://www.blm.gov/wo/st/en/info/newsroom/2013/may/nr_05_16_2013.html No state in the country has blocked HVHF like NY. Instead, they have worked diligently to prepare their regulations in a reasonable time. Ohio completed its HVHF regulations in 8 months. On June 17, 2013, Illinois Governor Pat Quinn signed into law Illinois’ regulations for HVHF after a 17 month collaboration among environmental groups, landowners, industry and legislators. Last week, California announced that it is near passage of its HVHF regulations after a 2 year effort, a bill that Governor Jerry Brown has said he will sign into law. Our state’s inability to move forward after 5 years has come at a time when our country has experienced the worst recession of our lifetimes, crippling the Upstate New York economy. High unemployment and property taxes have driven our children, friends and neighbors out of the Southern Tier at one of the highest exodus rates in the country. Farmers have been hit hard driving many to sell their farms, file for bankruptcy or lose their land in foreclosures. The economic benefits from natural gas development are real, proven and desperately needed in NY. Since 2008 Broome, Tioga and Chemung counties experienced a nearly $70 million loss in wages (down 1.2%) while Bradford and Susquehanna counties in Pennsylvania gained $278 million (up 28.3%). According to the Manhattan Institute, the income of residents in the 28 New York counties above the Marcellus Shale has the potential to expand by 15 percent or more over the next four years—if the state’s moratorium is lifted. It also found that had NY allowed its counties to fully exploit the Marcellus Shale, those counties would have seen income-growth rates of up to 15 percent for a given four-year period, or as much as 6 percent more than they are experiencing now. http://www.manhattan-institute.org/pdf/press_release_gpr_1.pdf But it’s not only about economics. Environmental organizations around the country know that greater use of natural gas is cleaning our air and offering a real solution to climate change. According to John Hanger, former Pennsylvania Commissioner of the Department of Environmental Protection: “Since burning gas emits no lethal soot or sickening toxic metals and about 50% less carbon dioxide than coal, the displacement of coal generation by natural gas slashes the amounts of major air pollutants like mercury, lead, arsenic, soot, and carbon dioxide. America's carbon emissions have dropped 800 million tons since 2007 and are back to 1995 levels, with gas displacing coal and some oil responsible for about half of the total reduction.” http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2013/jul/08/shale-gas-fracking-good-for-environment The JLCNY is committed to protecting the constitutionally guaranteed rights of New York landowners. Please visit our website at http://www.jlcny.org for details about our lawsuit against the state. Today’s anniversary marks a sad day for progress in NY. We truly hope our leaders in Albany will agree with our nation’s leaders that it is time to move forward with natural gas development. About The Joint Landowners Coalition of New York The mission of The Joint Landowners Coalition of New York (JLCNY) is to foster, promote, advance and protect the common interest of the people as it pertains to natural gas development though education and best environmental practices. JLCNY gathers and provides factual, objective information about safe and responsible natural gas development to landowners and community members.