Today, S 425, a bill to require gas drilling companies to disclose the chemicals in their fracking fluids, failed to move out of the Senate Environmental Conservation Committee. Sponsor Senator Liz Krueger issued this press release:
Statement from Senator Krueger on Frac Fluid Disclosure Bill (S.425) Failing to Move Through Environmental Conservation Committee
“Once again, an important bill has fallen victim to the intellectually dishonest debate that unfairly pits environmental issues against job creation. My bill (S.425), which today failed to pass through the Environmental Conservation Committee, would implement common sense measures by requiring gas companies to disclose all chemicals used in their hydraulic fracturing fluids and would ban the use of any substances deemed carcinogenic. However, instead of taking critical steps to ensure basic safeguards are put in place to protect all New Yorkers, my Republican colleagues have decided to stall this bill under the false pretense that it will hurt jobs in the upstate area.
“Let me be clear: the need for job growth and creation in Upstate New York is very real, and much needs to be done to help those areas suffering most from our struggling economy. However, as my Democratic colleague Senator Bill Perkins said, this is not the way to do it. If we are not good stewards to our environment, and allow practices that poison our water supply and in turn our communities, then all other issues are moot. What good does job creation do for a community, whose members are so sick they cannot work? In these circumstances only one group wins: the big gas companies, who have reaped the benefits of our land without paying any of the consequences of their actions.
“I applaud my Democratic colleagues who voted in favor of this bill, which would have brought this issue to the floor for further debate. I only wish that just one of the six Republican on the committee, particularly Senators Marcellino and Johnson, whose districts in Long Island would suffer tremendously from the contamination of New York City’s drinking water, would have voted aye and thought more of their constituents and less of big business interests.
“I remain confident that common sense will prevail, and hope to successfully bring this bill back through the Environmental Conservation Committee. But in the meantime, I hope all New Yorkers from Upstate, Downstate and Western New York realize that this is not an issue of jobs vs. the environment; this is an issue of health and transparency vs. big business interests and secrecy.”