Letters from Concerned Health Professionals of NY

Letter to Governor Cuomo and Acting Health Commissioner Zucker

May 29th, 2014

“We, the undersigned physicians, nurses, researchers and public health professionals, write to update you on the alarming trends in the data regarding the health and community impacts of drilling and fracking for natural gas. The totality of the science—which now encompasses hundreds of peer–reviewed studies (Physicians Scientists & Engineers for Healthy Energy (PSE), 2014) and hundreds of additional reports and case examples—shows that permitting fracking in New York would pose significant threats to the air, water, health and safety of New Yorkers. At the same time, new assessments from expert panels also make clear that fundamental data gaps remain and that the best imaginable regulatory frameworks fall far short of protecting our health and our environment.” Read the Letter

Letter to Governor Cuomo

February 27th, 2013

“We, the undersigned medical professionals, elected officials, organizations, and concerned New Yorkers, write to thank you. We support your decision to allow rule-making deadlines to lapse in order to grant Department of Health (DOH) Commissioner Nirav Shah additional time to continue the Health Review of the Department of Environmental Conservation’s (DEC) draft Supplemental Generic Environmental Impact Statement (SGEIS) for High Volume Hydraulic Fracturing (HVHF). As DOH Commissioner Shah emphasizes in his recent letter to DEC Commissioner Joseph Martens, understanding the potential impact of HVHF on public health involves answering complex questions. We therefore applaud you for not rushing the DOH through this essential process in order to meet an arbitrary deadline.” Read the Letter

Letter to Governor Cuomo

October 4th, 2012

“We in the medical and scientific community in New York State are pleased that our efforts to bring the public health impacts of the largest land use decision in New York State’s history to the attention of the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and Department of Health (DOH) and to the forefront of the SGEIS process have been heard. We were heartened that in DEC’s September 20, 2012 announcement regarding a health review, Commissioner Martens wrote: “Only after this evaluation is completed will a decision be made about whether to permit high volume hydraulic fracturing in New York. Obviously if there was a public health concern that could not be addressed we would not proceed.” However, a DOH review of work already prepared by DEC on this topic is not enough to answer the question of whether there is a public health concern that cannot be addressed.” Read the Letter

Letter to Governor Cuomo, Senate Majority Leader Skelos, and Speaker Silver

March 16th, 2012

“As you negotiate the budget, we urge you to include a Health Impact Assessment on gas exploration and production using high-volume, slick water, horizontal hydraulic fracturing in the New York State 2012-2013 budget. The New York State Assembly included such a health impact assessment in their 2012-2013 budget resolution.” Read the Letter

Letter to Governor Cuomo

December 12th, 2011

“We, the undersigned, represent the more than 103,000 New Yorkers diagnosed every year with cancer, as well as the loved ones of the more than 35,000 who die annually from cancer (New York State Cancer Registry, 2010). As New York State considers whether to maintain or lift its current moratorium on hydraulic fracturing, we bring to your attention the myriad ways in which the introduction of this industrial practice in New York State will raise our cancer risk even further and add more data points to the New York State Cancer Registry. As such, we echo the call of the more than 250 physicians and medical professionals who, in their letter to you of October 7, 2011, requested that the state fully assess the human health impacts of hydraulic fracturing in advance of issuing permits and as part of the decision-making process.” Read the Letter

Letter to Governor Cuomo

October 5th, 2011

“On behalf of the undersigned organizations and health professionals, we are writing with regard to the revised draft of the Supplemental Generic Environmental Impact Statement (SGEIS) on the Oil, Gas, and Solution Mining Program issued in full in September 2011. We are greatly concerned about the omission of a critical issue related to the development of natural gas using high-volume hydraulic fracturing, or ‘fracking’: human health impacts.” Read the Letter

Letter to Commissioner Shah

March 26th, 2011

“I am following up on the letter sent to you several weeks ago from a large group of medical doctors, scientists and other health professionals regarding public health and hydrofracking.” Read the Letter

Letter to Commissioner Shah

February 28th, 2011

“Congratulations on your appointment as Commissioner of New York State’s Department of Health. We wish you much success in this important position. Physicians, researchers and other representatives of the undersigned organizations would appreciate the opportunity to meet with you on an issue we believe is the most pressing health issue confronting our State.” Read the Letter