By JOE LoTEMPLIO, Press-Republican
---- — PLATTSBURGH — Congressional candidate Donald Hassig says all hydrofracking needs to stop right now.
“It’s not so much about just the 21st (Congressional) District. It’s about what is good for the whole country,” Hassig said during a recent visit to Plattsburgh.
Hassig, of St. Lawrence County, is the Green Party candidate in the race for the 21st District seat. He is challenging incumbent Bill
Owens, a Democrat from Plattsburgh. Matt Doheny is running as candidate on the Republican, Conservative and Independence party lines.
Both Doheny and Owens disagree with Hassig’s demand to halt all hydrofracking.
Hassig’s platform is all about protecting the environment and making sure the planet is safe for human beings to survive. He is the founder and director of Cancer Action New York, an organization dedicated to stopping the spread of dangerous carcinogens.
During his visit to Plattsburgh, Hassig focused on hydraulic fracturing, which is also known as hydrofracking. The practice involves drilling for gas by injecting a highly pressurized fluid into a well. It has come under fire for potentially polluting surrounding water supplies and air quality.
Hassig said hydrofracking has caused substantial damage to air quality in places around the country.
“There should be a federal ban on all hydrofracking,” he said. “It has been studied enough, and it does horrible amounts of damage to air quality, as well as water supplies. It’s insane.”
MORE THAN MONEY
Hassig said he believes the government has allowed hydrofracking to take off because it can generate great profits for corporations in the industry.
“It has to be about more than just money,” he said.
“Corporations are out of control, and they are harming everything in America beyond what is acceptable.”
Doheny’s camp said that he has no problem with hydrofracking.
“Matt believes in maximizing our domestic energy production, and hydrofracking should definitely be a component of that effort,” Doheny spokesman Jude Seymour said.
“He also believes it is appropriate for each locality in New York to determine if this technique is right for their community.”
Owens said he is fine with hydrofracking as long as it is not done near any aquifers and it is under control of the local community.
“There should also be complete transparency as to what chemicals they are putting into the ground,” he said.
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