Last week, state Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Joseph Martens announced that it has rejected calls for an “independent” health study of high volume hydraulic fracturing (commonly known as “hydrofracking”).

Martens wisely concluded that his department should not be asking an entity outside of government to undertake this effort.  Instead, the state’s Department of Health will conduct that study.

Martens did not indicate whether the DEC’s decision on whether to allow the natural gas development using high volume hydraulic fracturing (HVHF) is forthcoming or if the nearly four-year long environmental delay will continue.

Supporters of natural gas drilling recently launched an ad campaign that urges Gov. Cuomo to approve the practice.  It notes that New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, President Obama and GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney all support endorsing high volume hydraulic fracturing.