A month ago, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo told Joe Martens, Cuomo’s new Commissioner of the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), to release the years-in-the-making new regulations for drilling in the Marcellus Shale in New York State by July 1. Today is July 1 and the 900+ page drilling regulations document—known as the draft Supplemental Generic Environmental Impact Statement, or SGEIS—is supposedly being released to Cuomo only, with a public release of the document set for July 8, one week from today. Which means the SGEIS is being released next week and not today.
However, Joe Martens and the DEC issued a press release yesterday (see full release embedded below) outlining the major changes and provisions that will be in the SGEIS when it’s finally released to the public. The fact that the moratorium on hydraulic fracturing will be lifted under the plan has environmental extremists in a fit. The fact that the new SGEIS will ban fracking in 15 percent of the state’s Marcellus Shale region will not sit well with landowners in those areas. So there’s something for everyone to not like. However, on the whole, it seems as if the new rules will get the job done and landowners will be thrilled that drilling will finally begin in New York State.