NY Health Com. Nirav Shah Says Fracking Health Review Almost Done

burst bubble An interesting development in the “As Cuomo Dithers” fracking soap opera. Freshly back from a road trip to confer with researchers studying the health effects of fracking, New York State Commissioner of Health Nirav Shah appeared at a press conference yesterday with Gov. Cuomo. In a surprise announcement, Shah said he will render his judgment on the question of frack/no frack “in weeks.” Cuomo himself made some encouraging remarks at the presser too, including his belief that the two-year moratorium bill passed by the NY Assembly last Wednesday is going nowhere fast.

You may recall we are currently waiting for Shah’s review and official opinion on whether or not fracking as done under the rules proposed by the Dept. of Environmental Conservation would negatively impact “public health.” Shah and his assistants went on a road trip to find out what they could from fracking health studies now under way (see Deadline for NY Fracking Regs Slips Again…Or Does It?). One of those studies, being performed by Geisinger Health Systems, has only just received $1 million in funding and preliminary results won’t be available for at least a year. Anti-drillers celebrated and took that to mean fracking in New York will be on hold for several more years. Shah and Cuomo’s comments from yesterday may have burst their bubble…

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