Diagram of fracking process

Jointly sponsored by Philipstown Garden Club and Putnam Highlands Audubon Society

An informational seminar featuring speaker Wes Gillingham, a hydro-fracking expert, will be held on Saturday, Nov. 19 from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. Gillingham is the founding director of Catskill Mountainkeeper and an expert on the environmental impact of drilling for natural gas in the Marcellus Shale. He is an organic farmer and has worked for the National Audubon Society and the National Park Service where he was a park ranger based in the Upper Delaware River.

New York State representatives are currently debating whether to allow hydro-fracking (a process used to extract natural gas) in the state. Fracking injects highly pressurized fluids: water, sand and a mixture of unidentified chemicals into the ground to create cracks and fissures in shale formations thereby releasing the oil and gas contained inside. During the fracking process, these fluids, along with naturally occurring radioactive materials like radium, are brought to the surface and run off into our streams, lakes, rivers, and oceans. Though fracking creates jobs and is a lucrative business for natural gas companies, it has the potential to contaminate aquifers, drinking water, animal and plant life, and destroy the natural environment.

The North Highlands Fire Department is located at 504 Fishkill Ave, just south of Route 9. Click HERE for an earlier article about fracking.
Image courtesy of Department of Energy

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