Galef: Keep Hydraulic Fracturing Waste Out Of Ossining

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Assembly member Sandy Galef (D-Ossining) announces legislation Wednesday in front of the Ossining wastewater treatment plant that would ban hydraulic fracturing byproducts from being used in New York. Photo Credit: Nathan Bruttell

OSSINING, N.Y. – While Ossining residents won’t have to worry about their water lighting on fire, Assembly member Sandy Galef (D-Ossining) is joining a push to ban byproducts from hydraulic fracturing from being used in New York.

Galef and Assemblyman Tom Abinanti (D-Greenburgh) announced Wednesday in front of Ossining’s wastewater treatment plant that they would introduce legislation after the new year to prohibit the use of hydraulic fracturing byproducts that could harm the environment. Galef said companies dispose of the byproduct, known as brine, by selling it as a de-icer or dust reducer for use on state roads like Route 9 or the Taconic State Parkway.

Galef said she educated herself on hydraulic fracturing and supported banning it in New York.

“We don’t have the drills going on or the water pads or the ponds keeping this polluted water. We could have it here right on these roads,” she said Wednesday, adding that the waste could end up in the Hudson River or local wastewater treatment facilities. “Do you know how long we’ve been working on trying to make the Hudson River pure and clean? It has finally gotten itself cleaned up, and we certainly don’t want to start a process where it pollutes up again.”

This week, the Westchester County Board of Legislators unanimously passed legislation, introduced by Legislator Catherine Borgia (D-Ossining), that would ban the use of waste from hydraulic fracturing on county roads. Borgia said Wednesday that she was pleased Galef was “taking the next step.”

“We know from information that’s provided to us by places that have had hydraulic fracking that there is potential contamination of our water supply,” Borgia said, noting that some companies will sell or give away brine to municipalities, which then would become liable. “We felt this was a very smart thing to do in order to cut off problems of the past before they happen. We wanted to say, ‘No thank you,’ right up front to protect the health, the safety and the welfare of Westchester residents.”

Abinanti later praised Galef in helping introduce the legislation to ban use of the byproducts on state roads.

“We’re talking about an industrial process that has the potential to affect every community in New York state,” he said. “We are concerned for ourselves, for our neighbors and other parts of the state. This industrial waste is a significant hazard, a poisonous material, and it’s dangerous to people.”

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bill10526:

Boone Pickens used fracking for thousands of wells over decades with no ill effects. The PA pollution allegation was studied to death by the EPA, who found no problem with fracking.

Ms. Galep said that she studied the matter herself. But does she know how to filter hysteria from data? The State of New York did that with Love Canal and found no there there. Most people still believe in a Love Canal environmental catastrophe.

Yes, Pickens is an oil man. But he has very deep pockets. Wouldn't enterprising lawyers have milked him for making people sick?

Hucksters scared the daylights out of women with the breast implant cases. There was never any evidence to support the Plaintiffs lawyer extravaganzas. And Robetrt Kennedy Jr.'s recent vaccine scare actually murdered children. It's a shame that Ms. Galef's superstitions might prevent the people of New York State from realizing the economic benefits from fracking. She is a better than this.

CortlandtJamie:

The question isn't so much, "Is this 'brine' harmful?" The question is, "Is it more harmful than what is currently being used for de-icing and dust reducing?"

I would have thought there were already laws about what could be poured onto the roads. If there are, then I wonder at the point of this. If there aren't, then surely the law should be more general than simply outlawing this one product.

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