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Emergency Action Alert: NYS' fracking fate could be decided in the next 79 days

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Too busy to read about what is going on? Click this Immediate Action Alert:


It has been a truly tumultuous ten days. Thanks for all your help. I write today because the chips are down. We are all in. It is do or die.

The Cuomo administration announced that it hopes to decide whether to permit shale gas fracking in New York by 2/27/13. That is only 79 days away.

In order to meet that deadline, the Cuomo Administration faces an extraordinarily tough PROCEDURAL challenge. It would likely have to:

a) complete its DOH Review of the "health impact analysis" in DEC’s Revised Draft SGEIS;
b) adopt a Final SGEIS; and
c) finish DEC's Revised Rulemaking proceeding.

The weakest link in this plan is the completion of the DOH Review. That Review is being undertaken in total secrecy with no public participation. It is imperative that it be delayed, scrapped or sent back to the drawing board for extended comment.

In the next 79 days, every single moment must be focused on killing the Governor's plan. If we fail, shale gas fracking could get green-lighted in New York.

A. I am very grateful to my colleagues who attended last Monday's news conference in Albany to launch the attack on DOH's bogus review. Thank you Binghamton Mayor Matt Ryan, Assemblywoman Barbara Lifton, Dr. Sandra Steingraber and Roger Downs of Sierra Club. We received extensive press coverage:

B. I wrote to Governor Cuomo to request that he require full public participation for the DOH Review and expand its scope to address a total of 72 relevant documents, databases and other detailed data that are not included in the Revised Draft SGEIS.

I cc'd the three outside experts and all members of the Hydraulic Fracturing Advisory Panel. See:


I. Immediately email and call the environmentalists on the Hydraulic Fracturing Advisory Panel starting with Kate Sinding, Eric Goldstein, Robert F. Kennedy, Jr and Rob Moore.

See Advisory Panel Members and Contact Info:

Respectfully ask them to require:

a) public notice of the intent and scope of the DOH Review;

b) a 30-day minimum public comment period;

c) at least one public hearing to require the reviewers to hear testimony from interested parties; and

d) a restart of the SGEIS proceeding to allow public comment about how best to resolve all concerns about DOH's inadequate Review.

Many thanks to Advisory Panel Member Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo for writing to DEC Commissioner Martens to echo these concerns:
See her coverage:

Not one environmentalist on the Fracking Advisory Panel participated in last Monday's news conference criticizing the DOH Review or signed the coalition letter calling for DEC's Revised Rulemaking proceeding to be terminated and the SGEIS proceeding to be restarted to resolve the DOH Review's shortcomings. They have taken no public actions as Advisory Panel Members since the DOH Review was announced last September.

If they do not provide an immediate favorable reply, you can threaten to withdraw your financial support and complain to their leadership. Lean hard. They must be persuaded to oppose DOH's ludicrously insufficient Review.


II. Contact the Governor to make the same requests:

Email Governor Cuomo:

Call Governor Cuomo:
Albany: 518-474-8390
New York City: 212-681-4580
Binghamton: 607-721-8367

Twitter the Governor: @NYGovCuomo
Facebook him:


We are facing the biggest challenge in four years. Call, email and respectfully push, push, push the Panel members and Governor Cuomo.

With that goal in mind, I wish to praise the more than 60 activists who dropped everything last Wednesday and traveled from hither and yon to give the Governor a truly memorable welcome at the Binghamton Airport.

Check out a very nicely done airport demo piece by Channel 34’s Jim Ehmke at:

Our work in the last week generated a stunning ninth front-page piece with a photo in the last three months as well as extensive TV and radio coverage. That massive hard-hitting media coverage is essential to shaping the Governor's decision-making on shale gas. See:

I almost got kicked out of a pro-fracking meeting that Mayor Ryan invited me to attend. You will not believe what I heard. More on that later.

I will be in touch shortly about commenting on DEC's Revised Rulemaking proposal. The 30-day comment period begins 12/12/12 and ends 1/11/13. That is a political eternity from now. First things first.

Finally, please attend the Governor's State of the State Address in Albany on 1/9/13.

We need a big finish. Get on it. Thank you so much.

Very best regards,


See news coverage: