NY Assembly eyes ’hydrofracking’ moratorium

The New York Assembly’s Democratic leadership is pressing for a one-year moratorium on so-called “hydrofracking” for natural gas to further study the environmental impact of the deep drilling, especially on drinking water.

Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, a Manhattan Democrat, says his chamber will vote to postpone issuing state permits for new hydraulic fracturing until June 1, 2012.

Drillers release trapped gas by pumping huge volumes of water, laced with much smaller amounts of chemicals and sand, underground.

Silver says people’s health and welfare must take precedence over industry profits.
A similar bill is pending in the Senate.

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