Report | Environment New York Research and Policy Center

Fracking Failures

Fracking is dirty. From the very beginning of clearing a site for drilling, through extraction, transport and delivery of finished products, fracking poses significant risks to our air and water and to human health. People who live and work near fracking sites are at greater risk for respiratory and neurological diseases.

Oil and gas industry spokespeople routinely maintain that the risks of fracking can be minimized by best practices and appropriate state regulation. Not only is this false – fracking is harmful even when drillers follow all the rules – but drillers also regularly violate essential environmental and public health protec- tions, undermining their own claims. A look at recent data from Pennsylvania, where key industry players pledged to clean up their acts, illustrates the frequency with which companies still break the rules.

In Pennsylvania, fracking companies violate rules and regulations meant to protect the environment and human health on virtually a daily basis. Between January 1, 2011, and August 31, 2014, the top 20 offending fracking companies committed an average of 1.5 violations per day.

Report | Environment New York Research and Policy Center

The Spreading Shadow of the Shale Gas Boom:

Using “fracking,” gas companies are drilling near our communities, polluting our air and water and risking the health of our children and other vulnerable populations. Fracking involves injecting water, sand and chemicals at high pressures deep into the earth, breaking up underground rock formations to release natural gas. Blowouts and fires can occur at well sites, and drilling and extraction can contaminate our air and water, putting the health and well-being of nearby residents at risk.

Gas drilling companies are rapidly working to exploit the resources found in the Marcellus and Utica shale formations, which extend beneath much of Pennsylvania, Ohio, New York, West Virginia and western Maryland. Gas companies have already drilled and fractured more than 10,000 wells in the region, and states are issuing permits for thousands more. In this five-state region, permitted well sites exist within one mile of more than 400 day care facilities, schools and hospitals.

Report | Environment New York Research & Policy Center

More Wind, Less Warming

American wind power already produced enough energy in 2013 to power 15 million homes. Continued, rapid development of wind energy would allow the renewable resource to supply 30 percent of the nation’s electricity by 2030, providing more than enough carbon reductions to meet the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed Clean Power Plan.

Report | Environment New York Research & Policy Center

Star Power: The Growing Role of Solar Energy in New York

Our new report shows that tapping just a fraction of our state’s solar potential will yield tremendous benefits for our lives, our environment and our children’s future. The report also demonstrates that the rapid growth of solar makes goals what once seemed ambitious readily achievable.

Report | Environment New York Research and Policy Center

Lighting the Way

New York's progress on solar has helped fuel a tripling of solar energy nationwide between 2011 and 2013. In 2013, solar capacity in New York grew from 175 MW to 250 MW.