Suspends hydraulic fracturing for the extraction of natural gas or oil; suspends the issuance of new permits for such drilling.
TITLE OF BILL: An act to suspend hydraulic fracturing; and providing for the repeal of such provisions upon expiration thereof
PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL: The purpose of this bill is to prohibit the issuance of new gas and/or oil permits for well drilling that involves hydraulic fracturing (hydrofracking).
SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS: This bill would suspend, until June 1, 2014, the issuance of new permits for the drilling of a well that would utilize the practice of hydraulic fracturing for the purpose of stimulating natural gas or oil in low permeability natural gas reservoirs such as the Marcellus and Utica shale formations.
JUSTIFICATION: The potential development of natural gas drilling in low permeability natural gas reservoirs such as the Marcellus and Utica Shale formations has led to robust debate regarding the safety of the process and the protection of the environment.
Delaying the Department of Environmental Conservation's (DEC) ability to issue permits until June 1, 2014, will provide the Legislature with additional time to assess the true environmental impacts of hydraulic fracturing. This bill will also help ensure the Legislature has adequate time to review DEC's Draft Supplemental Generic Environmental Impact Statement (DSGEIS) once it is produced.
Gas drilling carries with it the risk of accidents, including spills and blow-outs. There are also impacts on the communities in which shale gas production is located including increased traffic, noise and habitat destruction; however, one of the biggest concerns is water safety. The large withdrawals of water required for hydrofracking could disrupt surface and ground water ecosystems. In addition, improper management of drilling and hydrofracking chemicals and drilling waste could pollute surface water and/or groundwater.
Given the complexities of the environmental and policy issues under consideration, there is an urgent need for an extension of the suspension of the permitting process involving hydraulic fracturing. Such a moratorium will allow for a thorough, deliberate and unrushed analysis of all of the factors involved.
PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: 01/18/12 Referred to environmental conservation.
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS FOR STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS: None.
EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect immediately and shall be deemed repealed on December 31, 2014.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 3875 2013-2014 Regular Sessions IN SENATE February 26, 2013 ___________Introduced by Sen. BALL -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Environmental Conservation AN ACT to suspend hydraulic fracturing; and providing for the repeal of such provisions upon expiration thereof THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. There is hereby established a suspension of the issuance of new permits for the drilling of a well which utilizes the practice of hydraulic fracturing for the purpose of stimulating natural gas or oil in low permeability natural gas reservoirs, such as the Marcellus and Utica shale formations. The purpose of such suspension shall be to afford the state and its residents the opportunity to continue the review and analysis of the effects of hydraulic fracturing on water and air quality, environmental safety and public health. For the purposes of this section, "hydraulic fracturing" shall mean the fracturing of rock by fluid for the purpose of stimulating natural gas or oil for any purpose. This section shall not apply to permits issued prior to the effective date of this act which utilize hydraulic fracturing that are subject to renewal. S 2. This act shall take effect immediately, and shall expire and be deemed repealed December 31, 2014.EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD07747-01-3