The Innovation Trail's Marie Cusick reports from Albany.
Scheiderman said federal authorities have failed to fully look into the potential environmental effects of drilling in the Delaware River Basin.
The lawsuit questions whether the Delaware River Basin Commission, a compact of five states including New York, has the authority to permit the controversial drilling method called horizontal hydraulic fracturing, or fracking.
Reactions to the lawsuit mirror the heated debate over whether New York should lift its temporary moratorium on fracking.
Jim Smith of the The Independent Oil and Gas Association of New York, a trade group that represents drillers, said Schneiderman has overstepped his authority: “It seems the AG’s on shaky legal ground and I think it’s unfortunate that the legal facts are not prevailing.”
Rob Moore said he disagrees with Smith. Moore is the executive director of Environmental Advocates of New York, a government watchdog group. “It seems like Attorney General Scheiderman is standing up for New York’s water resources, which is critical,” he said.
Regardless of the lawsuit, the drilling debate is certain to continue in New York. The Department of Environmental Conservation is still drafting fracking regulations. They're due out this summer.