One of the six public hearings on environmental issues associated with natural gas drilling will be at the State University College at Oneonta on Dec. 2.
The state Department of Environmental Conservation had previously announced communities and dates for the series of hearings. Officials recently released specific times and locations.
The Oneonta hearing will be at the Hunt Union Ballroom. The site will open at 4:30 p.m., with the formal meeting beginning at 5:15 p.m. Brief remarks by DEC staff will be followed by public comments starting at 6 p.m.
The meetings were scheduled to give the public an opportunity to participate in the analysis of the potential environmental impacts of high-volume hydraulic fracturing of horizontal wells in New York’s natural gas-bearing Marcellus and Utica shale formations, according to the DEC.
Other hearings are Nov. 6 in Allegany, Nov. 12 in Bath, Nov. 13 in Elmira, Nov. 17 in Binghamton and Dec. 4 in Loch Sheldrake.
Although there is a Generic Environmental Impact Statement (GEIS) covering gas and oil drilling in the state, the DEC determined that a supplement was needed to address issues related to the large volumes of water required to ‘hydrofracture’ the shale to release the gas.
As a first step of its review, DEC recently released a draft scope that proposes issues to be covered in the analysis. The forums give the public the opportunity to review and comment.
In addition to the DEC’s website at http://www.dec.ny.gov/energy/45912.html , copies of the draft scope, a Glossary of Technical Terms and related materials are available at the following area locations:
DEC Region 4, Stamford Sub-office 65561 State Highway 10, Suite 1, Stamford, 652-3722.
Huntington Memorial Library, 62 Chestnut St., Oneonta.
William B. Ogden Free Library, 42 Gardner Place, Walton.
Rogers Education Center, 2721 State Route 80, Sherburne, 674-4017.
Guernsey Public Library, 3 Court St., Norwich.
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