Louis W. Allstadt – From Supporter to Skeptic on New York State Fracking
DEC Not Up To The Job – Oil & Gas Industry Influences Regulators
COOPERSTOWN, N.Y. – Former Mobil Oil Corp. executive Louis W. Allstadt did not start out as an anti-fracking activist. He had to analyze the issue and then switch sides.
Initially, he bought into the natural gas industry’s gaudy promises that high-volume horizontal hydrofracturing could work economic miracles in rural upstate New York. He wrote in a 2009 newspaper opinion article that gas drilling “could provide enormous quantities of clean-burning natural gas with great economic benefits” to the state.
But after digging deeper, Allstadt veered away from the party line.
Now he is convinced the economic prospects are largely hype and that the state’s environmental regulators are disturbingly unprepared to deal with the side effects of such an invasive industrial activity.
“It’s a bad idea for New York State,” Allstadt said in recent interview, echoing detailed letters he has written to Gov. Andrew Cuomo and other state officials.