ALBANY, NY (02/14/2012)(readMedia)-- In response to the State Assembly's approval today of a bill to close a loophole in state law that exempts waste from conventional gas drilling, as well as by means of hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," from the state's hazardous waste laws, the New York Water Rangers released the following statement:
"The New York State Assembly, under Speaker Silver and Assemblyman Sweeney's leadership, took a critical step today to protect our water, families, and communities from fracking by closing a loophole that allows the gas industry to escape the state's hazardous waste laws. Requiring drillers to test, track, treat, and properly dispose of hazardous waste would finally bring the gas industry in line with every other hazardous waste-producing industry in New York.
Without this bill, the Department of Environmental Conservation will continue to impose a blanket loophole, which allows all oil and gas drillers to avoid hazardous waste laws, even when drilling wastes are hazardous. In practice this means hazardous wastes could be disposed of at municipal sewage plants ill-prepared to remove fracking chemicals or drilling-related toxins, spread on roadways, and even dumped in local landfills. To protect our communities from fracking, the New York Water Rangers call on the State Senate to pass the bill and send it to Governor Cuomo's desk. "
The New York Water Rangers campaign is supported by a network of organizations working to protect the rights and health of New Yorkers and one of our most precious environmental resources-water-from the dangers of irresponsible, poorly regulated and under-inspected natural gas exploration and development. The campaign is supported by Catskill Mountainkeeper, Citizens Campaign for the Environment, Earthjustice, EARTHWORKS Oil & Gas Accountability Project, Environmental Advocates of New York, Environment New York, Fleased, Natural Resources Defense Council, Otsego 2000, and Riverkeeper. Visit www.CleanWaterNotDirtyDrilling.org to learn more.