Something very important and positive is happening in Warwick and people should be aware of it.

The Conservation Board and Sustainable Warwick have joined forces to request that the Town Board enact a ban on hydraulic fracking and fracking-related activities throughout the Town.

We have jointly initiated this action for the following reasons:

• Because Warwick sits on the gas-rich Utica Shale, it is almost certain that without the ban, fracking will come to Warwick.

• Fracking is a heavily industrialized activity, totally at odds with both our Comprehensive Plan and the rural spirit of the Warwick community.

• In a town the size of Warwick, fracking would involve the use of hundreds of millions of gallons of water that would be drawn from mostly local sources and transported to the well sites by more than 100,000 heavy tanker truck trips spreading out over Warwick’s local roads.

• That water - containing 1 to 2 percent chemical additives, many of which are toxic – is injected under extremely high pressure down into the wells to fracture the shale beds and release the trapped gas. Then the water is brought back to the surface ,more toxic than when it went down, and is either trucked back out – more trucks – or stored in open pits on the surface where leakage and evaporation can disperse the toxins into Warwick’s air and water supply.

• The presence of this decades-long industrialized activity, with the truck traffic and the contamination hazard would be a direct threat to Warwick’s economy built on agriculture and tourism.

• Homeowners will be affected because major banks are no longer issuing mortgages for land where fracking is taking place – or even land that is near a fracked well. Likewise, because of the dangers inherent in fracking, insurance companies are canceling homeowner policies.

For all these reasons, we are asking the Town Board to take action now and join with over 140 other New York State towns that have banned or restricted fracking.

We feel strongly that, with this request, we are speaking for most of Warwick.

Dan Duthie, chairman

Warwick Conservation Board

Geoff Howard, chair

Sustainable Warwick