Nov 19, 2012

‘Imagine There’s No Fracking’ Billboard Appeals to Gov. Cuomo

Artists Against Fracking aims to make the moratorium on fracking in New York permanent

Fracking Artists Against Fracking New York Governor Cuomo

"Governor Cuomo: Imagine There's No Fracking," reads a large billboard up last week on New York's Major Deegan Expressway, a route often used by New York Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo.

“Our message is simple: We want Gov. Cuomo to imagine and guarantee a New York free of the fracking threat to our water, air, beautiful landscapes and climate,” said Yoko Ono, who designed and purchased the billboard space. “Every time New Yorkers pass this billboard, we also want them to imagine a truly clean energy future, not fracking.”

“Fracking for gas is inherently dirty and dangerous,” said musician Sean Ono Lennon. “Cement and pipes at these great depths are simply not reliable, as the industry's own documents show. Cracks and leaks will inevitably poison wells and aquifers. Rural communities will be turned into industrial brownfields. No amount of regulation can make fracking safe.”

Ono and Lennon recently formed Artists Against Fracking (AAF), a coalition of more than 180 artists including Lady Gaga, Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, Robert DeNiro, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and many others. The group aims to convince the governor to make the current moratorium on fracking in New York permanent, as have Vermont, France and many New York towns and cities. AAF is focusing on New York as a first step in a global effort.

The artists repeated their call for Cuomo to meet with them and to ensure the credibility of the state health study on fracking by allowing sufficient time, rather than rushing to meet an upcoming Nov. 29 regulatory deadline. According to the coalition, no response has yet been made to its requests for a meeting.