BAINBRIDGE – The Town of Bainbridge got the ball rolling on Tuesday night by becoming the first town in Chenango County to officially endorse the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation’s ability to allow development of natural gas and regulate it in a safe, responsible and competitive manner.
The Town of Preston and the Town of Guilford followed suit last night, and the matter is expected to come before the council in the Town of Afton tonight. A moratorium on gas drilling was to have appeared on the agenda at the Oxford Town Board meeting last night, but calls to council members were not returned by press time.
Environmental regulators have been compiling and composing safe drilling procedures since 2008 when concerns were raised about high-volume hydraulic
fracturing, the method which made it economically feasible to extract oil and gas from the Marcellus Shale. Fracking, as it’s called, unlocks trapped gas by injecting a well with millions of gallons of highly pressurized water mixed with a solution of soap, sand and chemicals that some worry has the potential to contaminate drinking water.