December 27, 2011

Letter from Walter Hang

The following email letter from Walter Hang of Toxics Targeting, has some call to action and some very positive news!


The Coalition Letter which requests that Governor Cuomo Immediately Withdraw the Revised Draft SGEIS NOW HAS MORE THAN 20,000 SIGNATORIES!!!  Can you believe that???  Wow.  That is more than twice as many signatories than we compiled in a year for a similar letter to Governor Paterson!

Thank you Working Families Party for circulating an alert and the coalition letter for your membership's consideration.  Your assistance is deeply appreciated.  I urge all activists in New York's Marcellus Shale gas fight to thank WFP and to contribute generously to their efforts.   

Check out how signatories are now sorted by: Government Officials; Physicians, Scientists and Health Professionals; Environmental, Civic and Public Interest Organizations; Wineries, Tourism and Other Businesses; Farmers and Agricultural Organizations and Citizens.  You will be thrilled. 

See: http://www.toxicstargeting.com/MarcellusShale/cuomo/coalition_letter/2011/signatures

The coalition letter has more than 200 official endorsements and more than 1,000 referenced supporting organizations.  That is an extremely formidable and impressive political coalition entirely capable of Heavy Lifting.


Many thanks to Ralph Nader, my esteemed colleague of many decades who almost never signs coalition letters, and John Richard, Binghamton Southside native, my stalwart companion of too many public interest battles to count, for their support.  I am humbled by your assistance.  I know what it means to those who decide.

I wish to express my gratitude, again, to Assemblywoman Barbara Lifton for all she has done to organize legislators and so many others.  I salute your achievements.   

Withdrawing the Revised Draft SGEIS is the main line of defense against horizontal hydrofracturing in New YorkStay tuned for more heavy-hitters and important groups signing the coalition letter. 

For good or for ill, this could be the beginning of the end.  All hands on deck. 
Keep pushing Governor Cuomo.  He is the key.  STAY ON MESSAGE.  Call and email.  See below.

I implore everyone to give it everything you have got each and every day until I ask you to stop. 
We can win this fight, but it will require epic effort.  After two years of day-to-day advocacy and organizing, we might be good.  No let up down the homestretch!!!

Pressure to Withdraw the Revised Draft SGEIS is intense and getting stronger each and every day.  Stay focused.  Keep piling on.  Hundreds of groups and key players are echoing that message along with thousands of citizens.  Chant that political mantra at every opportunity.

PLEASE NOTE: Signatories of earlier coalition letters are not carried forward.  Please sign the letter to Governor Cuomo if you have not already done so: http://www.toxicstargeting.com/MarcellusShale/cuomo/coalition_letter/2011

Here are major developments that bode well for a rip-roaring start to the New Year:

1.  Binghamton, the largest community in Broome County, passed a local ban shale gas hydrofracturing last week by a vote of 6-1.  Even though the legality and efficacy of local bans and zoning ordinances have yet to be determined, there is no question that this ban tells Governor Cuomo that a large part of the Southern Tier does not want to have anything to do with horizontal hydrofracturing.  That is a powerful message because Broome, Tioga and Chemung Counties are precisely where the Governor wants to allow Marcellus Shale gas extraction.  Many thanks to Binghamton Mayor, Matt Ryan, local activist, Issac Silberman, activists who showed up at the hearing and all the City Council reps who voted "yes:" Teri Rennia, Bob Weslar, Sean Massey, Lea Webb, Charles Kramer and Edward M. Collins.  Only Martin Gerchman
voted "no."

See Binghamton Mayor Matt Ryan interviewed on this matter: http://www.capitaltonight.com/2011/12/binghamton-mayor-defends-hydrofracking-moratorium/

See a video of my statement in favor: http://www.toxicstargeting.com/MarcellusShale/videos/2011/12/21/binghamton-testimony

See two clips about the matter:

http://www.pressconnects.com/article/20111221/NEWS10/112210403/Binghamton-approves-2-year-drilling-moratorium?odyssey=tab|topnews|text|FRONTPAGE

http://www.toxicstargeting.com/MarcellusShale/news/2011-12-17/numerous-hydrofracking-questions-remain-unanswered-tier

2. 
Since the "Millionaires" tax code issue and much of the budget were settled during the recent special session, there might be no bigger matter than Marcellus Shale in Albany during the months to come.  It is imperative that we generate maximum pressure on Governor Cuomo to withdraw the Revised Draft SGEIS FROM DAY ONE OF THE LEGISLATIVE SESSION.  That is why I urge each and every one of you to attend the State of the State address on 1-4-12Governor Cuomo has to know that this issue is his number one burden to bear.

Details to follow.  Mark your calendar!!!  Get there.  No excuses. 

3. I encourage everyone to submit Revised Draft SGEIS comments by 1-11-12 even though there is virtually no chance that DEC will meaningfully address the shortcomings of its proposal.  Use the coalition letter as a guide.  Make sure you call for DEC's fatally flawed proposal to be withdrawn and "sent back to the drawing board."

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