by Jeremy Moule
Over 400 elected officials, including several in Monroe County, have signed on to a letter urging Governor Andrew Cuomo to maintain the de facto moratorium on high-volume hydraulic fracturing. The letter, led by a group known as Elected Officials to Protect New York, says that the current analyses of fracking are inadequate.
The state Department of Environmental Conservation is conducting a detailed environmental review of high-volume fracking in shale formations. Governor Cuomo's administration has floated a proposal to allow fracking in the deepest parts of the Marcellus Shale formation, as long as the communities approve of the technique. But plenty of New Yorkers have concerns about fracking and its effects on things like water and air quality, roads, and home values.
On its website, Elected Officials to Protect New York offers its own list of concerns about fracking:
"We are concerned about hydraulic fracturing’s potential impacts on public health, local governments, first responders and law enforcement personnel, and the effects of drilling on property values and home mortgages, existing businesses and economies, and local community character. We are concerned about the lack of studies documenting the cumulative environmental impacts of fracking on our communities, water resources, air quality, and greenhouse gas emissions. We are concerned about the lack of safe alternatives for wastewater disposal. We are concerned about seismic activity, unsafe radiation levels, farm and ecosystem fragmentation, and insufficient DEC staffing."
Monroe County officials who have signed on to the letter include:
• County Legislator Carrie Andrews
• Brighton Town Clerk Dan Aman
• Brighton Town Board member Jason DiPonzio
• Brighton Supervisor William Moehle
• Brighton Town Board member Louise Novros
• Brighton Town Board member Christopher Werner
• Mendon Town Board member Moe Bickweat
• Honeoye Falls Mayor Richard Milne
• Rush Town Board member Kathryn Steiner
• Rush Town Board member Daniel Woolaver
• Rochester City Councilmember Jackie Ortiz
• Rochester City Councilmember Loretta Scott
• Rochester City Councilmember Elaine Spaull
• Rochester City Councilmember Matt Haag
• Churchville village Trustee Diane Pusateri