Fracking Fights Stay Local

An article by AlterNet outlines how battles over fracking are being fought largely at the local level in areas like New York and Colorado. In towns like Vestal, New York, landowners are forming collectives to counter efforts of anti-fracking activists pushing for limits on oil and gas drilling. AlterNet reports that “in areas like Vestal, home rule conflicts with a more traditional concept of property rights. Many landowners feel they should have the final say in what they can or cannot do with their property, and are ready to exclude the input of those who do not have land to lease.”

In February, in an effort to navigate around New York’s fracking moratorium, “the Joint Landowners Coalition—an umbrella organization that includes the Vestal Gas Coalition—sued the state for continuing its moratorium, arguing that the governor had taken political control of impact assessments being conducted by the state’s health and environmental conservation departments. The JLC is appealing a judge’s decision to block the lawsuit.”