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NY energy plan released; doesn't include fracking
January 8, 2014 - Ben Klein
New York is thinking long-term energy without a mention of fracking.
From the Associated Press:
ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — New York's long-term energy plan focuses on increased use of renewable energy and clean technology, while reducing consumer utility bills.
The plan, released Tuesday for a 60-day public comment period, calls for expanding use of natural gas instead of oil to reduce harmful air emissions. But it doesn't include expanding in-state gas production through hydraulic fracturing in the Marcellus Shale.
The 2009 version touted the economic and energy policy benefits of tapping New York's shale gas resources. But the 2014 plan takes no position for or against fracking, noting that state officials are reviewing health and environmental concerns. New York has had a moratorium on fracking since an environmental review was launched in 2008.
Six public hearings will be held on the plan.
However, as Capital New York points out,
"The state energy plan calls for “expanding access to natural gas” and a reduced reliance on high-emissions petroleum. However, it conspicuously leaves out any mention of fracking. A 2009 state energy plan specifically mentioned natural gas development as a way grow the economy, generate taxes and lower transportation costs."
From page 42 of the 2014 Draft New York State Energy Plan, Volume 1:
Reduce reliance on petroleum products for heating buildings by supporting the use of clean alternatives to heating oil and expanding access to natural gas in the near term while pursuing strategies to reduce natural gas leakage.
a. DPS to encourage and support oil-to-gas conversions by collaborating with other State agencies and regulated gas utilities to accelerate investments in natural gas distribution.
b. DPS to reduce emissions from natural gas infrastructure by requiring gas utilities to identify and repair leaks of significant magnitude.
c. DEC to evaluate regulations to limit methane emissions from natural gas compressor stations on intrastate pipelines.
d. NYSERDA to support economic and efficient clean heat options as alternatives to fossil fuel consumption, including solar thermal, geothermal, and the use of sustainably harvested biomass and advanced heating systems.
e. DEC, DOH, and NYSERDA to support research to enable the quantification of public health benefits to be incorporated into energy planning and policies.
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In this Oct. 30, 2013 file photo, people hold signs during a rally against hydraulic fracturing for natural gas, or fracking, in Albany, N.Y. As another year closes with a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing for natural gas in New York and no timetable for Gov. Andrew Cuomo to decide whether to lift it, drilling interests have all but given up on the state for the near future. (AP Photo/Mike Groll, File)