Hudson Valley, Southern Tier and Pennsylvania Fracking-Impacted Residents to Rally Outside GOP Convention Against Pro-Fracking Gov. Corbett and Rob Astorino

Pennsylvania Residents with Fracking-Contaminated Water Challenge Astorino to ‘Come and Drink It!’

Rye Brooke – Hudson Valley and Southern Tier residents will join with fracking-affected  Pennsylvanians in a rally against pro-fracking Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett and pro-fracking Rob Astorino outside of the Republican convention tonight. Corbett has overseen disastrous impacts of fracking in Pennsylvania, including widespread water contamination, air pollution and health impacts. Now Westchester County Administrator and Republican Gubernatorial candidate Rob Astorino has been touting the industry’s baseless propaganda and promoting fracking in New York’s Southern Tier in the face of overwhelming scientific evidence that the process is inherently dangerous and can’t be done safely.

Rally details: The rally will be at 6:00 PM tonight in Rye Brooke outside of the Hilton Westchester, 699 Westchester Ave., Rye Brooke, NY 10573. Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett is scheduled to speak this evening. Westchester, Southern Tier and Pennsylvania fracking-affected residents will be available for interviews.

Pennsylvania fracking victims will bring jugs of contaminated water and issue Rob Astorino a challenge that if he thinks fracking is so safe, then come and drink their water.

Ray Kemble of Dimock, Pennsylvania, said, “Gas drilling and fracking poisoned my water and left my community in ruin. If Rob Astorino thinks fracking is safe, then he should come down and drink our water.”

Craig Stevens of Silver Lake Township, Pennsylvania, said, “Fracking in Pennsylvania has been an unmitigated disaster. Governor Corbett has betrayed the health, wellbeing and trust of Pennsylvanians and is the last person who should be a role model for New York.”

They noted examples including Pennsylvania state data show at least 161 homes, farms, churches and businesses that have had their water contaminated by fracking between 2008 and the fall of 2012, as well as an Associated Press investigation that determined many confirmed cases of contamination and hundreds more complaints and that the review “casts doubt on industry suggestions that such problems rarely happen. Notably, polls have shown that two-thirds of Pennsylvanians support a moratorium on fracking given concern about health impacts and a majority of residents believe fracking poses a major risk to water resources.

Southern Tier residents have consistently asked Rob Astorino to stop touting fracking in the Southern Tier. Astorino still has not responded to a February letter from Southern Tier residents scientifically detailing why he is wrong and asking for a response.

Isaac Silberman-Gorn of Binghamton, NY, said, “We’ve read the science, listened to our medical experts and heard and seen first hand the horror stories coming out weekly from  Pennsylvania. It’s clear that fracking would be a disaster for the Southern Tier and we don’t want it. Astorino should stop promoting a process that would poison our families and our communities.”

Hudson Valley residents noted Rob Astorino’s hypocrisy in now advocating so aggressively for fracking in other parts of New York after he has opposed fracking in Westchester. In 2012, Astorino signed legislation prohibiting banning fracking waste in the county and noting that it poses “significant public health and environmental risks.”

Jodiah Jacobs of Red Hook said, “Astorino seems to be more interested in the oil and gas industry’s money than the health and wellbeing of New Yorkers. He’s denying the science and the facts that show fracking contaminates water, poisons the air and makes people sick. Fracking can’t be done safely and must not be allowed in New York.”

Both Governor Corbett and Rob Astorino have been dishonest about the economic and job growth and potential from fracking. As independent reports have shown, job numbers in Pennsylvania have been greatly exaggerated, far beyond what Corbett claims. And as the Philadelphia Inquirer recently characterized it, the “Pa. fracking boom goes bust”. Meanwhile, fracking threatens property values and brings with it significantly increased crime rates.

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