Update, Labor Day + 7: the Governor acknowledges that the regs. will be ready when the DEC thinks it’s ready to defend them in court. . . good luck with that guv.
There won’t be (m)any horizontal shale gas wells in New York this year. Or next. Or likely, the year after that. That’s the news flash for the day. You won’t be reading that on Reuters, or AP, or in the newspapers. You won’t see it on TV talk shows or ads. But that’s what’s (not) going to happen. No fracking fracking. In New York. This year. Or next. Or ?
The reason why is the “L” word. Litigation. And the “E” word. Economics – combined with the “G” word, geology. But first, the litigation. When DEC Commissioner Joe “Doc” Martens showed up at the Assembly Hearing on the dSGEIS, who was he accompanied by ? Geologists ? Nope, guess again. Hydrologists ? Chemists ? Don’t make me fracking laugh. Lawyers. One on each side. In suits. Looking none too happy to be there. Because “Doc” Martens and his boss knew where all this was headed: court. After years of cutting and pasting the dSGEIS, that mash-up of political science and gas industry propaganda. Any fracking regulations promulgated by the Cuomo Administration is headed straight for the courthouse. Then the plaintiffs can put Martens on the stand and ask him to explain who really wrote the dSGEIS.
For a lot of reasons – including completely ignoring the DEC’s regulatory obligations as an environmental agency. And conspiring with the industry it’s supposed to regulate. Plus, they will have failed to come up with a plausible regulatory system. No way to pay for such regulatory oversight. And no way to pay for damages to state roads. Except by off-loading those costs to the tax payers.
So, when it comes to fracking in New York state, it has not been “let the science decide” Or even “let the legislature, or the Governor decide”. But let the courts decide.
The precedent is of course, the home rule court decisions. That the DEC, Cuomo, etc. punted to the courts. The courts responded on that issue – big time. And the gassers have yet to mount a plausible appeal.
Expect the misbegotten “SGEIS” to follow a similar path . . . straight to the courthouse. That’s why Cuomo is pushing the regulations out the door like a hot potato : to start the clock in litigation. And offload the decisions to the courts.
If that is the way it has to be, then it’s OK by me. AboutToWhipSomebody
Not (m)any horizontal shale gas wells are likely in NYS any time soon. Because there is zero economic upside in shale gas in New York.
And the drilling prospects look increasingly dismal, based on the latest results south of the border in Pennsylvania. The companies that are in line for NYS shale gas permits are already trying to sell their positions – cheap and fast.
If there were some token wells drilled, there might be some local hires - for out of state crews. There might be some Potemkin Wells drilled in Vichy, New York with Wall Street funny money. And if they do not leak right away. Just wait. As soon as you want to exit Cuomo’s Fracking Freak Show, get your town board to adopt a road use ordinance and land use ordinance. Or get a new town board.
The DEC is not going to protect you. Cuomo is not going to protect you. Obama is not going to protect you. You protect you. You heard it here last.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Monday that there are no immediate plans for a decision on whether to allow hydraulic fracturing in New York and that he expects lawsuits to follow the decision either way.
The state Department of Environmental Conservation is expected to issue a final determination on whether high-volume hydrofracking—a natural-gas extraction technique that involves a mix of water, sand and chemicals injected into gas-rich shale formations—can be done safely. There has been much speculation over when the decision would be announced.
During an interview on an Albany radio station Monday morning, Cuomo said he isn’t going to pressure the state agency into making the decision by a certain date, such as the upcoming election day for the office of the president and the state Legislature or by the end of the year.
“When it’s done, and when they’re prepared — that’s when we’ll announce the decision,” he told WDJG.
“And, remember, the announcing of the decision is not going to be the conclusion,” he continued. “I promise you, there will be lawsuits, whatever the decision is. So the day right after the decision, there will be another press conference that says, now we’re going to step two, which is a series of legal challenges and political challenges, and we’re going to try to get federal legislation and state legislation.
“It’s going to be an ongoing situation for a long, long time,” he said.
Andrew Revkin commented on why a slow roll-out should be given the benefit of the doubt. I just doubt the benefit.