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Fracking is not safe, Cuomo should ban it

On Feb. 3, Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s health commissioner, Dr. Nirav Shah, testified before the New York State Legislature and mentioned his ongoing review of the health impacts of hydraulic fracturing or fracking. I urge Shah to continue to do his due diligence to study the many health impacts of fracking. The reality is there is already more than enough evidence that fracking poses unacceptable risks to our health.

For example, the Colorado School of Public Health found in 2012 that air pollutants near fracking sites were at levels sufficient to raise risks for cancer, neurological deficits and respiratory issues. And this past August, medical experts at a single rural clinic in Pennsylvania documented health problems in 20 different people likely caused by airborne exposures to emissions from nearby drilling and fracking operations.

I’m confident that if Cuomo and Shah take a thorough look at the evidence, they will come to the conclusion that so many New Yorkers have: fracking puts residents at risk, is not safe and must be banned.

Rita Yelda

Food & Water Watch

Buffalo