Catskill Mountainkeeper Press Release
For Immediate Release
January 4, 2010

Contact:  Ramsay Adams
Executive Director
Catskill Mountainkeeper

NY Legislators Join Environmentalists To Tell Governor Patterson That the DSGEIS For Horizontal Gas Drilling In The Marcellus Shale Is Deeply Flawed

NY legislators and environmentalists unite for first time in opposition to gas drilling document 

For the first time, New York legislators joined Catskill Mountainkeeper and other environmental groups to tell Governor Paterson that the DSGEIS for horizontal gas drilling is deeply flawed.  At a press conference today at 11:00 AM on the steps of New York City Hall, New York city, county, state and federal legislators representing districts across the state challenged the ability of the study to protect the people of New York and called on the Governor for an extensive and thorough review of gas drilling's cumulative impacts on water, air and land. 

Speakers included Congressmen Eric Massa, Michael Arcuri and Jerrold Nadler, State Senators Tom Duane and Eric Schneiderman, Assemblymen James Brennan and William Colton, Tompkins County Legislator Martha Robertson, NYC Council Speaker Christine Quinn, NYC Council Chair of Environmental Committee Janes Gennaro, NYC Council Member Melissa Mark-Viverito, Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer, and former Council Member Tony Avella. Gregory  Meyer, Legislative Counsel for State Senator Jose Serrano, and Wendi Paster, Chief of Staff for Assemblyman Richard Gottfried, read statements of support. 

Though unable to attend, Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr., Assembly Members Barbara Lifton and Sam Hoyt sent additional statements of support. 

Many legislators added their voices to the request made to Governor Paterson last month by 25 environmental organizations asking the Governor to withdraw the DSGEIS. Representatives of five of the environmental groups also spoke at the press conference, including Kate Sinding, NRDC Senior Attorney, who moderated the event, Wes Gillingham, Catskill Mountainkeeper Program Director, Annie Wilson, Sierra Club Atlantic Chapter Energy Chair, Alex Mathiessen, Riverkeeper President, and Deborah Goldberg, Earthjustice Managing Attorney.

Wes Gillingham called on Governor Paterson to withdraw the document in its entirety and resubmit a new document that will satisfy the requirements of the State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA).  He further stated, "New York City is not the only community that is totally dissatisfied with the flawed DSGEIS and asked the DEC to prepare comprehensive regulations that are fully protective and provide for a sustainable future for all of our state's water bodies and other ecological resources." 

This event marked the first time the environmental community has come together with New York's legislators at city, county, state and federal levels as one united bloc on the horizontal gas drilling issue. Other organizations echoing similar concerns are the EPA and the DEC's own Steward Council of Div.189, representing 2000 of the DEC's scientific, professional and technical workers.


About Catskill Mountainkeeper
Catskill Mountainkeeper is a community based environmental advocacy organization, dedicated to creating a flourishing sustainable economy in the Catskills and preserving and protecting the area's long term health. We address issues of water integrity for the Delaware and Susquehanna River Systems, the defense of the vast woodlands that encompass the Catskill Forest Preserve and the New York City Watershed as well as farmland protection. We promote "smart" development that balances the economic needs and concerns of the Catskill regions' citizens and the protection of our abundant but exceedingly vulnerable natural resources. 
Catskill Mountainkeeper
Ramsay Adams
Executive Director
Catskill Mountainkeeper
Wes Gillingham
Program Director