Poll Showing Widespread Support for Fracking Ban in New York
Syracuse, NY – Residents and leaders of organizations from across Central New York held a press conference today, speaking to Governor Cuomo’s wise decision to ban fracking and thank him for listening to the science and protecting the drinking water and health of all New Yorkers. Residents across Central New York – and all of New York State – are ecstatic with Governor Cuomo’s courageous decision. They also noted that New Yorkers have been following the science on fracking, which is why a Quinnipiac University poll yesterday showed New Yorkers support Governor Cuomo’s decision to ban fracking by 55 percent to 25 percent, including 56 percent to 30 percent upstate. The groups also discussed the opportunities that lie ahead for renewable energy and efficiency and making New York into the renewable energy capital of the nation.
The administration’s decision to ban fracking protects public health and prevents New York from being negatively impacted by the inevitable air pollution, water contamination and other environmental, health and safety hazards associated with fracking, standing on firm ground with a compelling amount of scientific study to support it.
Renee Vogelsang of Frack Action, a Syracuse resident and also a spokesperson for New Yorkers Against Fracking, said, “We sincerely thank the Governor and his administration for banning fracking in New York! Governor Cuomo held to his word and listened to the science on fracking. Governor Cuomo wisely listened to the science and courageously stood up to the toxic oil and gas industry. This decision protects our local economy and homes from air and water contamination, our farms from dangerous pollution, and future generations. As the science overwhelmingly demonstrates, fracking is not and cannot be done safely.”
“On behalf of Elected Officials to Protect New York, a network of over 850 elected officials in all 62 counties of New York State, we would like to thank the Governor for his strong leadership in protecting the health and safety of our constituents and all New Yorkers by banning fracking,” said Syracuse City Councilor At-Large Kathleen Joy. “This holiday season Governor Cuomo gave us the gift of protecting our clean water, and we are truly grateful.”
Jessica Azulay of Alliance for a Green Economy, a Syracuse resident, said, “On behalf of Alliance for a Green Economy, thank you to Governor Cuomo for listening to the science, for listening to the health professionals, and for listening to the people of New York who stood up for themselves and their neighbors. We are grateful. We are emboldened. We are eager to work with Governor Cuomo and in our own communities to accelerate the transition to sustainable energy, to protect our water, our air, and our ecosystems, provides good jobs, and builds prosperity for all New Yorkers. We can help renewable energy jobs grow exponentially if we find ways to further empower people and communities to change their relationship to energy, to replace their appliances and their lightbulbs, to weatherize their homes, to take power, literally, into their own hands, by harnessing renewables on their own rooftops and farms, and their own community spaces.”
New York State’s health and scientific community has also pointed to a significant and rapidly growing body of evidence showing risks and harms of fracking. The independent experts group Concerned Health Professionals of New York has released a Compendium of Scientific, Medical, and Media Findings Demonstrating Risks and Harms of Fracking, a 103 page summary of the evidence with 448 citations.
Two weeks ago, Physicians, Scientists & Engineers (PSE) for Healthy Energy released an analysis of the approximately 400 peer-reviewed studies to date on the impacts of fracking and shale gas development, which showed the overwhelming majority of scientific studies indicate either serious negative impacts or risks. Specifically, the PSE Healthy Energy analysis showed:
- 96% of all papers published on health impacts indicate potential risks or adverse health outcomes.
- 87% of original research studies published on health outcomes indicate potential risks or adverse health outcomes.
- 95% of all original research studies on air quality indicate elevated concentrations of air pollutants.
- 72% of original research studies on water quality indicate potential, positive association, or actual incidence of water contamination.
- There is an ongoing expansion in the number of peer-reviewed publications on the impacts of shale and tight gas development: approximately 73% of all available scientific peer-reviewed papers have been published in the past 24 months, with a current average of one paper published each day.
It became clear to health professionals and scientists that scientific studies of the environmental and health dangers related to fracking have begun to emerge in a substantial way. Their findings were alarming, showing health and environmental impacts and leaving unanswered questions about the extent of even further risks.