A national gas-industry group has taken issue with the state’s selection of health experts for its hydrofracking review, claiming the picks “contradict the state’s intention of having an independent and objective” process.”
Energy in Depth, an organization with backing from gas companies and industry trade groups, is set to send a letter to state Health Commissioner Nirav Shah on Monday, raising concerns about the three academics who will help assess the state’s health-related fracking proposals before they’re finalized.
“Each of these experts has shown a troubling willingness to speak publicly about supposed dangers and risks of hydraulic fracturing,” Energy in Depth Executive Director Lee Fuller wrote. “While voicing
concerns is an understandable and at times necessary function of scientific progress, these experts have chosen to make statements that contradict well?established scientific conclusions about both hydraulic fracturing and shale development.”
Specifically, the group—which is well known for trying to poke holes in studies and reports that are critical of hydrofracking—takes issues with previous comments made by two of the experts and a Colorado School of Public Health report co-authored by the third.
“To be clear, we believe the three experts selected can provide valuable input in this review,” Fuller wrote. “But in order to meet the demands of New York residents – who deserve and strongly support a fair, open and independent process – we encourage the state of New York to consider additional experts
to allow for a true diversity of perspectives.”
Environmental groups, meanwhile, have been largely pleased with the experts selected, but have consistently called for a more independent process that follows the standards of a full health-impact assessment.
Here’s the Energy in Depth letter, dated Monday: