In 2014, the state’s acting health commissioner concluded that “it would be reckless to proceed in New York until more authoritative research is done, as he would not let his own family live in a community” with these threats to public health.
Then-Department of Environmental Conservation [DEC] Commissioner Joe Martens determined to “issue a legally binding findings statement prohibiting (fracking) in New York state.”
Many studies have followed, and none show HVHF or its infrastructure to be safe.
At a recent town board meeting in Minden, Amish farmers asked the board members if it would be safe to site a school near the soon-to-be-expanded Brookman Corners Compressor Station. The Board told the farmers it would be safe enough.
This autumn those same farmers may puzzle over crops stunted by fumes, and perhaps a few years out, they may have to deal with increased incidences of respiratory illness in children and teachers at that school.
The American Medical Association does not believe proximity to fracked gas build-out is healthy but Commissioner Howard Zucker remains silent. We must ask: “Dr. Zucker, would you send your kids to this school?” What about the homes and day care facilities near other proposed compressor station sites along Dominion’s New Market project?
Medical experts are united. It is not safe to put schools or homes or day-care facilities next to compressors. Our commissioner of health should speak out for public health, even if we can’t rely on town boards or the DEC to do so.