Category Archives: General

NY Health Commissioner Resigns Amid Fracking Criticism

Dr. Nirav Shah, New York’s Health Commissioner, is resigning his post as of June to take a position with California-based Kaiser Foundation Health Plan. Word of the decision surfaced on Wednesday night, a mere hours after Republican gubernatorial candidate Rob Astorino called for Shah’s resignation citing delays in his department’s investigation into the potential health effects of hydraulic fracturing. Astorino accused Shah of doing Governor Andrew Cuomo’s “bidding” in an effort to delay the decision until after the election. Governor Cuomo denies any connection between…

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Landowner Group Sues NY Over Fracking Delay

On Friday, the Joint Landowners Coalition of New York (“JLCNY”) filed an Article 78 petition in Albany County Supreme Court seeking an end to the five year de facto moratorium on fracking in the state.  Specifically, the petition requests that the court compel NY’s Department of Environmental Conservation to issue the final supplemental generic environmental impact statement with associated findings and render a final decision on whether and under what circumstances fracking will be permitted in the state. In September 2012, DEC Commissioner Joseph Martens…

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PA’s Highest Court Strikes Down Controversial Fracking Law

In August 2012, Shale Watch reported on a challenge to Pennsylvania’s controversial Act 13, a natural gas development law that prevented municipalities from utilizing zoning restrictions to limit where natural gas drilling could take place within their boundaries and granted state agencies sole authority to determine where fracturing should occur.  Last Thursday, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court affirmed the Commonwealth Court’s ruling and found that Act 13 unconstitutionally restricted the power of municipalities to govern gas drilling in their own jurisdictions. The most divisive provision of…

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California Releases Proposed Fracking Regulations

Last Friday, California’s Department of Conservation released a set of proposed fracking regulations scheduled to take effect on January 1, 2015 after a public comment period. The proposed regulations would require companies to apply for a permit, disclose information regarding the prospective well’s casing and a list of chemicals to be used, provide written notice to all neighbors of the proposed project at least 30 days in advance,  conduct an analysis of nearby wells and earthquake faults, and pressure-test the well and all equipment to…

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Top Fracking Legal Stories For The Week

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