NY May Ban Fracking in Watersheds, State Land

Thursday, Jun 30, 2011  |  Updated 4:21 PM EDT
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NY May Ban Fracking in Watersheds, State Land

Tim Graham

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New York environmental officials have proposed a ban on drilling for natural gas with hydraulic fracturing in the New York City and Syracuse watersheds and on all state-owned lands. They'd permit it on private land only under "rigorous and effective controls'' codified into state law.

The Department of Environmental Conservation will give its revised recommendations to Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Friday, the same day an executive order prohibiting "hydrofracking'' expires.

The agency released details of the major revisions Thursday afternoon.

The DEC's supplemental environmental study and revised draft recommendations will be subject to further public comment and revisions, a process likely to take months during which there will be no hydraulic fracturing.

DEC Commissioner Joe Martens says the report strikes a balance between protecting the environment and promoting economic development.

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