As New York intensifies its debate over whether to employ hydraulic fracturing techniques to recover shale-gas deposits in the Marcellus shale formation, Gov. Andrew Cuomo is sticking to his pledge to "let the science and the facts" determine if the state' should lift a two-year moratorium on fracking.
Meanwhile, five months after the state's Dept. of Environmental Conservation (DEC) released revisions to the state's oil and gas drilling regulations, which were in place before the moratorium, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has joined the federal Environmental Protection Agency in raising concerns over gas drilling in the Marcellus shale formation that extends into upstate New York. The DEC predicts that it may receive applications to drill between 1,700 and 2,500 horizontal and vertical wells in the upstate region if the moratorium is lifted. The majority of the wells would be tapped using the techniques of horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing, otherwise called fracking.