New York State public radio and other news organizations have recovered a report composed by Governor Cuomo’s administration, written in February last year, that stamps the controversial process of hydrofracking as a safe bet provided reasonable precautions are observed.
The document notes possible health risks, including chemical exposure, drinking water contamination, and possible radioactive seepage. However, and more importantly, the report also notes corresponding safety protocols that the state’s Department of Environmental Conservation could prescribe in order to cut down on risks.
Site-specific risk assessments are discouraged due to the sheer number of variables involved. It appears the report would likely have contributed to New York’s ongoing investigation into the environmental outlook for fracking.
But the DEC isn’t too enthused.
“The document is not a health assessment, is nearly a year old, and does not reflect final DEC policy,” said DEC spokeswoman Emily DeSantis in a statement. “The final SGEIS will reflect the review currently underway by DOH and its outside experts. No conclusions should be drawn from this partial, outdated summary.”
Presently, the New York State health commissioner is going through DEC data accompanied by three experts. That data has not been released, and there is no deadline offered as to when the health review will be completed.
Cuomo’s stance remains that he will not rush this matter.