ALBANY, N.Y. (May 21, 2015) — The New York Department of Environmental Conservation today rescinded a previous attempt to avoid an environmental review of the impacts of a proposed expansion of a rail-to-barge transfer terminal in Albany. The decision is an indication that the state now plans to undertake a formal review of the project, which would facilitate shipping of tar sands crude oil along the Hudson River and state railroad tracks
A statement from Kate Sinding, Deputy Director of the New York Program at the Natural Resources Defense Council, follows:
“All you need to do is look at the spate of recent oil spills and fiery disasters that have erupted along river banks and train tracks all across the country to see that moving oil by water and rail comes with very serious risks. A tar sands oil disaster on the Hudson River, or on New York’s rails, would be devastating for the environment, as well neighboring communities—just look at the cleanup of the Kalamazoo River in Michigan to get a sense of how ugly this stuff can be.
“As the oil industry pushes to bring risky oil transport ever-closer to our homes and neighborhoods, the state is right to acknowledge that the risks—from spills to air pollution and increased train traffic—warrant a closer look. We believe a comprehensive and robust environmental review will show that tar sands do not belong in New York—and we should continue moving in the direction of cleaner, safer energy sources.”