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October 24, 2009

For more information contact:
Jack Ramsden, 315-424-1454 (cell)


Neighbors of the Onondaga Nation (NOON) enthusiastically supports the Atlantic Chapter of the Sierra Club's resolution of October 17th calling on the NYS Legislature to enact a ban on permitting gas wells that use horizontal drilling and hydro-fracturing. We take this position after hearing from friends at the Onondaga Nation that their concerns on this issue went unheeded by the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation. Such a ban will protect the environment which we all share and promote the social and environmental "healing" for which the Onondagas have provided leadership. Following is the full text of the Sierra Club resolution.

"WHEREAS extensive environmental and health damages would be caused by horizontal drilling and high pressure hydro-fracturing gas extraction techniques due to the contamination of water, soil and air by the toxic chemicals used in drilling and fracturing, and the naturally occurring toxic chemicals brought to the surface from deep in the ground,

"WHEREAS these environmental and human and animal health damages will have damaging economic consequences on residential property values, and on the state's tourism, agriculture, forestry, winery, real estate development and educational businesses,

"WHEREAS the infrastructure costs of building and repairing roads, water treatment facilities, and other public services would far exceed any economic benefit to local communities, and

"WHEREAS it is yet to be proven that the green house effects of the production and use of natural gas produced by horizontal drilling and hydro-fracturing are any less than those of the production and use of coal when the life cycle emissions of natural gas production and the higher impact of methane as a green house gas are taken into account.

"Be It Resolved that the Atlantic Chapter of the Sierra Club calls on the New York State Legislature to enact a ban on permitting gas wells that use horizontal drilling and hydro-fracturing to release gas from tight sand and shale formations such as the Marcellus."

Steering Committee member Jack Ramsden said, "We believe that there is ample evidence from other communities where drilling is being done that these two gas drilling procedures would negatively impact the environment in this territory where the Onondaga Nation promotes environmental healing." NOON adds their voice to that of the Sierra Club Atlantic Chapter and the rising chorus calling for a ban in New York State on horizontal drilling and hydro-fracturing.

NOON is a grassroots educational and advocacy project of the Syracuse Peace Council. For more information contact Neighbors of the Onondaga at (315) 472-5478 or see