CORNING -- Chris Tate of Hector believes hydro-fracturing, a process used in extracting natural gas from the Marcellus Shale formation, is an environmental disaster waiting to happen.

On the other hand, Mike Gustina of Hornby would have no problem allowing drilling on his property.

Both men were among about 400 people who crowded into the auditorium at Corning-Painted Post East High School on Wednesday evening for the fourth and final public hearing on the Department of Environmental Conservation's draft for state regulation of the drilling process.

The DEC has already held three other hearings -- in Sullivan County, in New York City and in the Binghamton area.

At issue is the safety hydro-fracturing (or fracking), a process that involves pumping millions of gallons of water and other fluid deep into rock formations to tap into massive natural gas deposits.

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