New York Mayor Bloomberg Backs ‘Responsible’ Extraction of Gas

New York Mayor Bloomberg Backs ‘Responsible’ Extraction of Gas

In a recent article in The Washington Post, New York Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg voiced a strong opinion in favor of fracking, citing it as a way to lower utility bills, spur economic growth and reduce dependency on coal.

The article states that “Fracking for natural gas can be as good for our environment as it is for our economy and our wallets, but only if it’s done responsibly,” “The rapid expansion of fracking has invited legitimate concerns about its impact on water, air and climate — concerns that industry has attempted to gloss over.”

The article was written by Mayor Bloomberg and Texas gas producer George P. Mitchell, who pioneered the technology of hydraulic fracturing combined with horizontal drilling in the 1990’s.

The article was written with the intention of promoting “the sensible center” in the heated debate over fracking. The mayor states that drilling should take place under “common sense” regulations, in order to minimize harm done to the environment.

In addition to the article, Bloomberg Philanthropies awarded a 3-year, $6 million dollar grant to the Environmental Defense Fund, to support the EDF’s strategy of securing strong rules and developing industry best practices in the 14 states with 85 percent of the country’s unconventional gas reserves. “What we need to do is make sure that the gas is extracted carefully and in the right places, and that has to be done through strong, responsible regulation. And that’s what our work with EDF is all about,” says Bloomberg.

The article has caused an immediate reaction from environmentalists, who are looking to impose an outright ban on drilling. The administration of New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in the process of deciding whether to allow fracking, as well as where, although no decision is expected to be announced soon.

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