75% of New York's Active Oil & Gas Wells Go Uninspected Every Year

Progress Ohio/CC BY 2.0

Some more stats on fracking in New York state that don't paint a pretty picture of the state's oversight of oil and gas drilling. Bet you didn't know that New York currently has about 10,000 active oil and gas wells already (I for one didn't have that stat on the tip of my tongue).

The pretty damning part, coming via a new report from Earthworks, is that more than 75% of these active wells aren't inspected on an annual basis, with the rate of inspections decreasingly markedly in about the past ten years.

From 2001-2010 there were roughly 1000 new wells drilled in New York, will the overall number of inspections dropped by more than 1000. In fact, the inspection rate in New York is lower than Colorado, New Mexico, and Texas, with those wells that are inspected facing less stringent inspection protocol than in other states.

Part of the reason, the report notes, is likely budgetary. The state DEC employs 1000 fewer people than it did 20 years ago, due to budget cuts, hiring freezes, incentives for retirement, and good old fashioned layoffs. DEC spending for travel to inspections and enforcement has been cut in half since 2008.

Read more: NYS DEC: Inadequate enforcement guarantees irresponsible oil and gas development in New York

Tags: Fracking | Natural Gas | New York State

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