This map from the USGS shows the extent of the Marcellus Shale formation that oil and natural gas companies are exploring for drilling.
Environmental groups from across the state are rallying at the Capitol for lawmakers to safeguard against potential hazards related to hydraulic fracturing for natural gas in the Marcellus Shale region.
The region spans the southern half of New York and parts of Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia.
Meanwhile, the Independent Oil & Gas Association of New York is calling on Gov. Andrew Cuomo to expedite the Department of Environmental Conservation's review of the practice commonly called "fracking" and allow permitting for gas exploration to proceed after nearly three years of regulatory review.
Fracking involves the high-pressure injection of chemically treated water into a gas well to crack surrounding shale and release trapped natural gas. The industry says fracking is well-regulated and safe but opponents fear it could contaminate water supplies.
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