New York state banned hydraulic fracturing Wednesday after a report from the state’s health commissioner said the practice poses “significant public health risks.”
New York environmental commissioner Joseph Martens said he will issue an order officially banning fracking sometime early next year.
A moratorium had already been in place since 2008.
New York’s health commissioner Howard Zucker told Reuters there is not enough information on fracking to conclude it is safe.
“The potential risks are too great, in fact not even fully known, and relying on the limited data presently available would be negligent on my part,” Zucker said.
The ban will make a portion of the Marcellus shale play that extends into the southern half of New York off limits to drillers.
The API New York State Petroleum Council criticized governor Andrew Cuomo’s decision, arguing the ban will strike a huge blow to job creation and deprive the state of much needed tax revenues.
“Governor Cuomo acted irresponsibly by issuing a statewide ban on hydraulic fracturing, putting the state’s economy on a reckless path and ignoring the needs of New York families,” API New York State Petroleum Council executive director Karen Moreau said.