To the Editor:
(Madison County, NY – Sept. 2012) Citizens for Safe Energy (CSE) is pleased to announce that the results are in! Over the course of the summer, CSE partnered with Colgate’s Upstate Institute to produce and distribute a survey on residents’ opinions and perceptions on natural gas development using high-volume hydraulic fracturing.
Mailed to a sampling of residents in the towns of Hamilton and Lebanon, the survey was created and then analyzed by student interns from Colgate University with oversight by staff and professors. The results of the survey will be used to tailor local educational programming, as well as to assist elected officials in better understanding the needs of their communities when planning for the future of this industry in our region.
The survey pointed out differences in attitudes on the risks and benefits of high-volume hydraulic fracturing (popularly referred to as “hydrofracking”) based on landownership status or leasing interest. The majority of residents surveyed felt that the use of high-volume hyrdrofracking would negatively affect their surroundings and community, with most of the concerns centered on environmental effects.
Some residents reported that they were not well-informed about the potential impacts or benefits of hydrofracking. The survey highlights those areas where the public requires further information about the process and possible effects of this industry on our region. CSE supports continued educational efforts on all aspects of high-volume hydrofracking through access to objective information from trusted sources and encouragement of a balanced and respectful community dialogue.
The complete survey analysis is available at csemadco.org and on the Upstate Institute website at upstate.colgate.edu/Libraries/PDF/UI_Natural_Gas_Survey_1.sflb.ashx.
Deborah Zahn, Citizens for Safe Energy