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News stories tagged with "hydrofracking"

Workers at a Cabot Oil & Gas drilling site in Susquehanna County, Pa. Photo: Matt Richmond, Innovation Trail
Workers at a Cabot Oil & Gas drilling site in Susquehanna County, Pa. Photo: Matt Richmond, Innovation Trail

New fracking method uses propane, not water

In the debate over whether hydraulic fracturing should be allowed in New York State, the need for millions of gallons of water at each well is a major concern.

A Canadian company called Gasfrac has developed a fracking method that eliminates the need for all that water. But as the Innovation Trail's Matt Richmond reports it's still too early to tell whether it will make a dent in a crowded industry.  Go to full article
Drilling rig in the Marcellus Shale region. Photo: Laurie Barr
Drilling rig in the Marcellus Shale region. Photo: Laurie Barr

Vestal: a hot spot in the debate about hydrofracking

Hydraulic fracturing involves the high-pressure injection of water and chemicals into the ground to split rock apart and release natural gas or oil. It's being used extensively in the rapidly expanding natural gas industry in Pennsylvania, but has been blamed for a range of environmental and health problems.

Just across the border, the Town of Vestal, near Binghamton, is well-placed for natural gas development. It's in one of three counties in New York considered to be in the sweet spot of Marcellus Shale development. And as the Innovation Trail's Matt Richmond reports, its location is what makes Vestal a hot spot in the larger debate about hydrofracking.  Go to full article
Photo: Innovation Trail
Photo: Innovation Trail

New report questions NY's handling of drilling waste

A new report from Environmental Advocates of New York is questioning the state's regulation of wastewater from oil and gas wells. As the Innovation Trail's Matt Richmond reports the study is based on about 100 drilling applications filed with the Department of Environmental Conservation.  Go to full article
Photo: Karen DeWitt
Photo: Karen DeWitt

Anti-fracking group petitions Cuomo, state government

Anti fracking groups presented Governor Cuomo with 200,000 signatures asking for a ban on the gas drilling process in New York, and a State Senator predicts the opposition will have an effect on the governor. In Albany, Karen DeWitt has more:  Go to full article

State says community support will be major part of fracking decisions

Earth Day came and went in New York without too much discussion of what many environmentalists believe to be the biggest issue facing the state, when and where the gas drilling process known as hydrofracking will occur. Karen DeWitt has an update.  Go to full article
Marcy Dam in the Adirondacks was severely compromised by Tropical Storm Irene last year.
Marcy Dam in the Adirondacks was severely compromised by Tropical Storm Irene last year.

Water expert says even wet communities need to think about drought planning

The North Country is no stranger to the awesome power of water. We saw what it could do last spring and summer, when spring floods, and later Irene, swept through the area. Our economy depends on water in various forms: agriculture needs just the right amount, fisheries need to be healthy and clean, the mountains need snow in the winter.

Journalist Charles Fishman writes about how we're handling water issues in America today and what we need to be doing in his new book, The Big Thirst. Fishman will speak at SUNY Potsdam on April 25. He told Nora Flaherty the world has all the water it needs, and it's infinitely renewable even if it's absolutely filthy--it just needs to be cleaned.

Charles Fishman will speak at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, April 25 in Sara M. Snell Music Theater at SUNY Potsdam's Crane School of Music. The presentation is free and open to the public. To reserve a seat, (315) 267-2515.  Go to full article
Drilling rig in the Marcellus Shale region in Roulette, Pennsylvania. Photo: Laurie Barr
Drilling rig in the Marcellus Shale region in Roulette, Pennsylvania. Photo: Laurie Barr

Group says fracking would transform the rural landscape, hurting tourism

An historic preservation group is weighing in on hydro fracking for the first time, and they don't like what they say they've been learning about the gas drilling process.

They say it would change the nature of the landscape from rural to industrial and would detract from heritage tourism in the Marcellus shale region. In Albany, Karen DeWitt has more.  Go to full article
We have made a mistake, is what I believe, in saying that the EPA should regulate carbon emissions.

Romney on issues where environment, economy meet

For the first time in a long time, political observers had been eyeing New York's Republican Presidential Primary, wondering if New York voters might actually have an impact on who's running for the White House. But it appears the GOP nominee has all but been decided before a single ballot is cast in the Empire State.

The Innovation Trail's Zack Seward looks at Mitt Romney's positions on a couple of key economic issues.

Marie Cusick, Ryan Delaney, Matt Richmond and Daniel Robison contributed reporting on this story. The Innovation Trail is a collaboration between five upstate public media outlets, reporting on New York's innovation economy. Support comes from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.  Go to full article

Industry reps explain fracking

Members of the oil and gas industry were in Albany Wednesday explaining the technical side of hydrofracking, and natural gas drilling. WMHT's Marie Cusick reports for the Innovation Trail.  Go to full article
Matt Foley checks the meters at his power plant in Wadhams, NY (Photos:  Brian Mann)
Matt Foley checks the meters at his power plant in Wadhams, NY (Photos: Brian Mann)

Electricity glut threatens North Country's green power industry

Yesterday, we reported on New York's growing reliance on electricity produced Canada. A new project now in the works would pipe enough energy from hydro dams in Quebec to power a million homes in New York City.

The North Country has also seen a boom in energy production in recent years, with new wind farms, wood pellet plants, and biomass. But with more and more competition, and the lingering economic downturn, electric rates have plummeted.

That's putting pressure on small-scale producers of electricity, including companies trying to generate green, carbon-free energy. A biomass plant in Chateaugay, in Clinton County, laid off 13 workers last month. And many of the region's small hydro dams are also struggling.

This morning, Brian Mann profiles one dam operator in the Adirondacks who says without big regulatory changes, some green energy producers won't survive.  Go to full article

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