API Targets New York for Consumer Education

Next week, the American Petroleum Institute will begin hosting hydraulic fracturing workshops in Albany, N.Y. The initiative is part of its drive to make the case for this 60 plus year drilling technique that has been the source of controversy and debate in recent years.

New York has not made a final determination about the process yet.

The New York stop is part of the API country-wide tour of areas where hydraulic fracturing is underway and could take place. New York is likely to have substantial natural gas resources, since a large swath of its southern tier lies on top of the Marcellus Shale formation, which is the source of an energy bonanza in Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Ohio.

The API said the workshop will offer an "in-depth discussion" with industry leaders to explain how hydraulic fracturing is conducted.

The API workshop comes as New York's own debate on the matter is heating up. State environmental officials are debating whether or not to allow the natural gas mining technique to take place. Two New York State Supreme Court justices last week upheld towns' rights in separate cases to use zoning laws to prohibit natural gas companies from drilling within town limits.

This is exactly the type of educational forum needed to educate the public about a process many know very little about. Microseismic technology is just one way of the highly scientific ways to ensure that the fracs are staying where they should (6,000 feet underground) and make adjustments in real time. And if opponents feel the presentation might be one-sided, we encourage them to attend!