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US Seeks to Dismiss NY Suit Over Natural Gas Drilling

Tuesday, 02 Aug 2011 05:32 PM

 


The federal government will ask to dismiss a lawsuit from New York State seeking to force it into a fuller environmental review of how natural gas drilling could affect 9 million water drinkers in New York.

The government plans to ask U.S. District Judge Nicholas Garaufis in Brooklyn, New York, to dismiss the case on grounds that the state can’t prove injury, and doesn’t have the right to sue federal agencies, the U.S. said in court papers filed yesterday.

The complaint is “barred by well-settled principles of sovereign immunity,” the U.S. wrote.

On May 31, New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman filed a complaint saying a commission that oversees the Delaware river basin has proposed regulations that will allow a drilling procedure known as hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, at 15,000 to 18,000 gas wells without a full environmental review. The attorney general seeks to halt the regulations until the commission complies with the National Environmental Policy Act’s requirement for a full review of all health and safety risks.

The case is New York v. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, 11- cv-2599, U.S District Court, Eastern District of New York (Brooklyn).

--Editors: Mary Romano, Andrew Dunn

To contact the reporter on this story: Tiffany Kary in New York at tkary@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at mhytha@bloomberg.net.


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