News has been trickling out today that the process of hydraulic fracturing of natural gas will be allowed in parts of upstate New York.
Right off the bat, this is clearly bad news for New York's environment. Upstate communities are directly exposed to toxins by the controversial practice and millions of downstate New Yorkers rely on the same at-risk aquifers.
To make matters worse, this isn’t just bad news for the environment and public health; fracking will put already struggling farms in New York State at economic risk and create few jobs, despite industry claims.
Farmers and other land owners are often tricked and strong-armed by the fracking industry into signing faulty leases that leave them will the fall out from any mishaps that happen during the drilling.
Claims by the fracking industry that it will create badly jobs in upstate New York are dubious at best. Earlier this year New York’s Department of Environmental Conservation released a study saying that thousands of jobs would be created by the industry. But the study has come under fire and the consultant it hired is “revisiting its calculations,” reconsidering the truth of the statistic.
This is welcome news for the fracking industry and the few New Yorkers who will be be employed when the practice starts up. In the end, though, the positives simply don't come close to outweighing the negatives.