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Letter to Fracking Panel Members Requests that DOH Review be Put On-Hold and That a Comprehensive Shale Fracking Public Health Impact Study be Undertaken

October 17, 2013

To: Hon. Thomas W. Libous, Hon. Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., Esq., Hon. Kate Sinding, Esq., Hon. Eric A. Goldstein, Esq., Hon. Mark Brownstein, Hon. Thomas J. Santulli, Hon. Robert B. Catell, Hon. Mark K. Boling, Esq., Hon. Jeff Williams, Hon. Bradley Gill, Hon. Heather Briccetti, Hon. Kathleen McGinty, J. D., Hon. James B. Bays


Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo, a member of the Hydraulic Fracturing Advisory Panel, has written a carefully documented and respectful letter calling for Dr. Shah's inadequate shale fracking "review" to be put on hold and for a comprehensive "Public Health Impact Study" to be conducted to resolve all Marcellus Shale health hazard concerns once and for all.

See her letter at:

We, the undersigned, write to request that the other members of the Hydraulic Fracturing Advisory Panel take similar action to require Governor Andrew M. Cuomo to:

a) halt Dr. Shah's DOH Review because it has been conducted in secret without any public input, has unacceptable major shortcomings and cannot fulfill its mandates; and

b) resolve High Volume Hydraulic Fracturing (HVHF) health concerns once and for all by undertaking a comprehensive, open and transparent "Public Health Impact Study."

DOH Review Would be Informed by Three Shockingly Incomplete HVHF Health Impact Studies

Three "comprehensive studies" that Dr. Shah claimed would "assist in informing" his DOH Review are shockingly incomplete.

On 2/12/13, Dr. Shah wrote DEC Commissioner Martens that one of the reasons his DOH Review had not been completed was that he wanted to review "the first comprehensive studies of HVHF health impacts...(emphasis added) and receive "first-hand briefings on these studies and their progress, which will assist in informing the New York Review (emphasis added)."

He specifically cited an extensive investigation by Geisinger Health Systems "which cares for many patients in areas where shale gas is being developed in Pennsylvania, [and] is undertaking studies to analyze health records for asthma and other respiratory diseases, accidents and injuries, as well as birth outcomes (emphasis added)."

He said that his Review would be completed "within a few weeks..."


On 6/19/13, Associated Press reported that Geisinger only has $1.0 million out of $25.0 million required to undertake its proposed studies. The Geisinger investigation obviously has not progressed far enough to inform Dr. Shah about anything.


The two other studies are equally incomplete. The Environmental Protection Agency's study reportedly will not be done until at least 2016.

DOH Review Fails to Fulfill its Mandates

There can be no dispute that Dr. Shah's Review fails to fulfill its mandates to:

a) address "any legitimate request for additional due diligence and study…(emphasis added);"

b) ensure that "DEC's ultimate decision on hydraulic fracturing is beyond reproach either as a matter of law or as policy (emphasis added);

c) allow DEC to avail "ourselves of the best possible advice from the private and academic sectors (emphasis added);" and

d) "… result in the most thorough review of high-volume hydraulic fracturing in the nation…(emphasis added)."


Hydraulic Fracturing Advisory Panel Has Responsibility to Address DOH Review Shortcomings

Members of the Hydraulic Fracturing Advisory Panel have a clear responsibility to address the shortcomings of the DOH Review because Dr. Shah wrote:

"In particular we are focused on the relationship of HVHF to the health impacts of drinking water contamination, but also other areas such as air quality and community impacts (emphasis added)."

Among other responsibilities, the Advisory Panel is charged with:

"developing recommendations to ensure DEC and other agencies are enabled to properly oversee, monitor and enforce high-volume hydraulic fracturing activities;"

"developing recommendations to avoid and mitigate impacts to local governments and communities (emphasis added)."


Given the major shortcomings of Dr. Shah's Review detailed herein, it is imperative that Governor Cuomo halt the fatally flawed DOH Review and require New York State to conduct its own comprehensive, open and transparent shale fracturing "Public Health Impact Study" without further delay.

Dr. Shah observed: "The time to ensure the impacts on public health are properly considered is before (emphasis in the original) a state permits drilling." That concern is of paramount importance because Governor Cuomo stated on 5/22/13 that Dr. Shah's Review "should be done in the next several weeks."


If you are unable to persuade Governor Cuomo to resolve the grave shortcomings of the DOH Review, you should consider resigning your position because the Advisory Panel obviously would not be worthy of its purpose.

Thank you for your consideration.

Very truly yours,

cc: Honorable Andrew M. Cuomo

Honorable Joseph Martens

Honorable Nirav R. Shah

Honorable Donna Lupardo

Total Signatory Count: 1253

Judith A Cartisano
7 Raymond Street
Rochester, NY
A DeMatteo
508 Linn St
Ithaca, New York
June Gordon
1927 Ginnan Road
Corning, NY
George Koury
Education Coordinator
Olive Defense Against Fracking
8 Sahler Mill Road
Olivebridge, New York
Rudy Hunter
Olive Defense Against Fracking
8 Sahler Mill Road
Olivebridge, New York
Maurine McTyre-Watts
Donna Mummery
67 Village Trail
Honeoye Falls, New York
Richard Gardner
1007 Westmoreland Ave
Syracuse , NY
Ann Horan
41 Edgewood Drive
Baldwinsville, NY
Lou Priem
276 Van Yahres Rd
Cooperstown, NY
William Turechek
392 Hathaway Rd.
Otego, NY
Anthony Suchman
4590 Hitchcock R
Montour Falls, New York
Melne Thomas
112 Crystal Beach Blvd
Moriches, NY
kathleen Barrett
Frack Action
5055 Van Zandt Rd.
Syracuse, new york
Jeannette Rice
Rensselaerville, NY
23 Atkins Ave
Cortland, New York
Lynn Cahill-Hoy
4413 Lathrop Drive
Marcellus, NY
Maryl Mendillo
RD# 1
Aurora, NY
Marie Burns,
2409 Slaterville Road
Slaterville Road, New York
Edward Nizalowski
RAFT (Residents Against Fracking Tioga)
441 Brown Road
Berkshire, NY
Dianne Sefcik
194 Clickman Rd
Westerlo, NY
Roland Micklem
1662 Lopez Ln. Apt. E110
Savannah, New York
Nancy Mendillo
11quill ave
Auburn, Ny
Gail Flanery
1137 Hedgewood Lane
Niskayuna, NY
Ruby Turner
85 Autumn Ridge Circle
Ithaca, NY
John Jongen
164 West Church Street
Fairport, New York
Matthew McCarty
1420 Ellis Hollow Rd
Ithaca, NEW YORK
Weston Blelock
P.O.B. 1342
Woodstock, NY
John Burns
8048 Lookout Point
Ovid, NY
Stephen Singer
SRS Unlimited Imagemaker
445 Ferguson Road
Freeville, NY
Barbara Heywood
RAFT, Tioga Co (Residents Against Fracking TiogA)
2804 Ellis Creek Rd
Barton, New York
Penny Baron
445 Ferguson Road
Freeville, NY
Lars Peterson
1623 Brown Rd.
King Ferry, NY
Dorothy Gavrielides
1192 Lake Como Rd.
Cortland, NY
Arlene Kossoff
Daniel Keough
Citizens of NYS Who Will Politically Fight Any Politician Who Approves the Reckless Practice of Hydrofracking, ignoring the Public Health Impacts
Paul Wojciechowski
1007 east lake road
Dundee, Ny
Lewis Gurley
6520 N. Avon Rd
Honeoye Falls, NY
john miller
298 bald hill road
brooktondale, NY
Scott Fisher
475 E Broad St Apt 10A
Rochester, NY
Elizabeth McMahon
383 ferguson rd
Freeville, New York
Davies Nagel
3558 main
piffard, ny
Fred Wilcox
212 Second
Ithaca, New York
Anne Marie Johnson
Creamery Road
Katherine Murphy
19 revere rd
Larchmont, Ny
vreni roduner
purdy ave
rye, NY
susan straight
Toxics targeting
5539 bower rd
trumansburg, NY
Carol Hinkelman
348 Ripplewood Dr.
Rochester, New York
Allan Hochberg
Katharine Adams
236 East 13th Street apt 14
New York, NY