Monday, July 18, 2011

WOW! Leaked NYSDOT document on Transportation Impacts of Marcellus Shale Development in NY

UPDATE: I've gotten a lot of mail about this. First, it's been pointed out this doc is from the NYSDOT, not the DEC. Next, Steve Coffman has provided me w/data which says the NYSDOT's estimated number of truck trips is off by 2 orders of magnitude! He shows his calculations which says it's not 1.5M trucks state wide, but more like 574M truck trips! So take the numbers about the costs to repair the roads, and multiply by 400x !!! His report is published here.

From the executive summary:

“The potential transportation impacts are ominous. Assuming current gas drilling technology and a lower level of development than will be experienced in Pennsylvania the Marcellus region will see a peak year increase of up to 1.5-million heavy truck trips, and induced development may increase peak hour trips by 36,000 trips/hour. While this new traffic will be distributed around the Marcellus region this Discussion Paper suggests that it will be necessary to reconstruct hundreds of miles of roads and scores of bridges and undertake safety and operational improvements in many areas.

“The annual costs to undertake these transportation projects are estimated to range from $90 to $156 million for State roads and from $121-$222 million for local roads. There is no mechanism in place allowing State and local governments to absorb these additional transportation costs without major impacts to other programs and other municipalities in the State.

“This Discussion Paper also concludes that the New York State Department of Transportation and local governments currently lack the authority and resources necessary to mitigate such problems. And, that if the State is to prepare for and resolve these problems it is time to establish a frank and open dialogue among the many parties involved.”


Stephanie Low said...

At last! an honest estimation of the ECONOMIC costs to our state. The fact is, we simply can't afford fracking.
Stephanie Low

Mary Sweeney said...

These already "ominous" costs pertain only to rebuilding roads and bridges. How about the cost of lost time as we all sit stuck in traffic? How about the cost of having our home values plummet when quiet country roads are turned into highways full of drilling trucks? How about the health costs due to lost sleep, loss of the ability to use country roads for healthy activities like walking and biking, increased air pollution, and an increase in traffic accidents? Surely all of this makes the "ominous" costs "disastrously ominous."