07:27 GMT26 February 2020
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    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) – The New York draft budget contains a measure to make the state's five-year ban on fracking permanent in order to safeguard the environment and public health, Governor Andrew Cuomo said in a press release on Wednesday.

    "New York's leadership on hydraulic fracturing continues to protect the environment and public health, including the drinking water of millions of people, and we must make it permanent once and for all", Governor Cuomo said.

    Cuomo added that in the five years since the moratorium was introduced in 2014, the state has not suffered economically by prohibiting fracking.

    "The region has since become a hotbed for clean energy and economic development investment”, Cuomo said.

    The five-year moratorium, which soon expires, was introduced in 2014 after the state's Department of Health concluded that there were "significant uncertainties" about the possible negative consequences of fracking on human health, as well as water and air quality.

    Fracking opponents note that the process releases toxic air contaminants, such as benzene and formaldehyde, which can cause cancer.

    budget, fracking, New York
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