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'Frack Now' supporters march in Albany

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— Supporters of using hydraulic fracturing to produce natural gas staged a rally and march today.

Hundreds of people gathered at the Corning Preserve on the Hudson River and then marched to a park near the Capitol for speeches by elected officials and labor leaders who said the state is losing out on jobs and money by not moving fast enough to approve the drilling.

The technology known as “fracking” to free gas from deep in the Marcellus Shale is backed by industry and others who say it will be an economic boon for upstate New York.

Many of the marchers today wore red t-shirts with the word “Jobs” in large letters. Some carried signs reading “Frack Now” and “Support Responsible Gas Drilling.”

Opponents cite environmental concerns, including potential damage to groundwater from the high volumes of water and chemicals injected into the earth and damage to roads and other infrastructure from industry traffic.

Regulators are reviewing the issues and rules that would be put in place if Gov. Andrew Cuomo lifts the current moratorium on fracking. That includes a state health department evaluation of a health study done by the Department of Environmental Conservation.

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