New York Policy Forum Takes on Hydrofracking

Prominent Penn State University Geologist Terry Engelder, Journalist Jamie Kitman, Environmental Regulations Experts Stuart Gruskin and Albert Appleton to Examine Controversial Proposal to Drill for Natural Gas in New York State’s Portion of the Marcellus Shale

New York, NY, September 22, 2011 – The New York Policy Forum will hold a panel discussion of experts concerning the proposal to allow natural gas drilling known as Hydrofracking in New York State. The event will take place October 6, 2011 at the Cornell Club in New York City.

Hydrofracking is a means of extracting natural gas deposits embedded in shale rock formations by deploying high pressure drills and chemical solutions. The technique is widely used in various parts of the United States and Europe but has been banned in New York State, which is proposing a partial lifting of its moratorium. Hydrofracking is controversial: while studies suggest it could generate up to X jobs and Y millions in revenue, environmentalists are concerned that the process contaminates drinking water supplies.

Award winning journalist Jamie Kitman will moderate a panel that includes noted water expert Albert Appleton, a former commissioner of New York City’s Department of Environmental Conservation; Penn State University Geologist Terry Engelder, a foremost expert on The Marcellus Shale Deposit; and Stuart Gurskin, the former Deputy Commissioner of New York State’s Department of Environmental Conservation who oversaw New York’s current moratorium on hydrofracking.

Commenting on the upcoming event, Moderator Jamie Kitman said, “The proposal to allow hydrofracking in New York raises all the great, classical challenges facing policy makers and concerned citizens in the petroleum era, namely: can hydrofracking occur without damage to the environment and public health? Will it really generate jobs and economic growth and what, if any, are the hidden costs? Can we transition away from dependence on oil, grow the economy and protect the environment all at the same time?  I’m excited,” said Kitman, “to be leading a discussion among a top notch group of true experts on this topic. Let’s see what we can learn.”

NYPF co-founder John Giardino said, “Support for and interest in NYPF has been growing steadily. This is the second in an ongoing series of events designed to make public policy issues more accessible and we are once again thrilled to have outstanding experts to help us do that.”


The New York Policy Forum (NYPF) is a non-partisan, non-profit organization founded by Jonathan Cohen and John Giardino. Our mission is to promote discussion on timely and important topics of general interest. NYPF’s public forums feature expert panels and speakers on a wide range of issues spanning public policy, human rights, education, and the arts. We are not aligned with any party, movement or advocacy group. Visit our website to read articles and to access transcripts and videos of our events at


To attend the event, contact Tina Bonifacio,, (347) 766-9731

For press inquiries, contact Jonathan Cohen,, (203) 722-1858