At a recent anti-fracking rally in Albany, speaker after speaker was passionate and well-informed about the already-proven dangers of hydraulic fracturing. To highlight just a few:

    • Dr. Sandra Steingraber, who was arrested for protesting the storage of fracking wastes under Lake Seneca, the source of her drinking water, told us that she’d rather wear an orange prison suit than see her children in blue hospital gowns.
    • Ghandi’s grandson told Cuomo that while his grandfather led people on a peaceful walk to the sea, now the sea was walking, not so peacefully, to the people.
    • Lois Gibbs brought her perspective from the Love Canal, where at least there were laws against the chemicals that had been used. (In case you don’t know, when he was Vice-President, Dick Cheney inserted a provision that exempts fracking from the Clean Air and Water Act. )

The good news, from Mark Jacobson, Professor of Civil Engineering and the Environment at Stanford University, is that his recently issued, several-hundred paged report describes in detail how New York State can produce 85% of its energy needs with renewable energy sources by 2030 (and 100% by 2050)—and at lower cost than fossil fuels!

Now if only Governor Cuomo, New York State Senators and Assembly Members would read Professor Jacobson’s report and act on it. Instead, I noticed a line in the “Energy Highway” section of the Governor’s New York Rising: End of Session Report – 2013 report, tucked away on page 35, stating that expanding natural gas utility service will reduce energy costs for homeowners and businesses. “Natural gas” means fracking.

Even more disturbing, on the international level, is the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a ten-nation trade agreement that the United States is currently and secretly negotiating to allow corporations to sue governments for the profits the corporations would have made if environmental protection laws were not in effect! Word is that Obama wants Congress to agree to Fast Track Authorization of the agreement. Fast Track will not allow Congress to comment upon or make any changes to the agreement.

If we don’t take time from our busy lives now to sign petitions, call or write Obama, our Senator, Representative, Governor, State Senator and Assembly Member, we will bear responsibility for allowing these travesties of due process of law and environmental justice to irreparably damage the environment and the circumstances which make our busy lives possible.