Rumors began circulating last night that the vote expected Monday on whether to allow oil companies to frack in the Delaware River Basin, the one that Mr. Ruffalo has been so vocal in opposing, may be delayed. A few hours later, he reached out to us to confirm that it was indefinitely postponed.
The Delaware River Basin Commission announced Friday it was postponing a vote on hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, to give the agency’s five commissioners more time to review the draft regulations. No new meeting date has been set.
The rules need three votes to pass, though the commission had been hoping for unanimous support.
The votes in question belong to the governors of New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware and New York (with the fifth being a colonel from the Army Corps of Engineers, there to represent the Obama administration). There was no indication how that fifth vote would go; New York and Delaware were already declared “no” votes, while the other two governors were presumed to be voting “yes.” Now, there won’t be a vote at all, at least for now.
Mr. Ruffalo told us that he sees this as a major setback for fracking advocates. How this finally plays out remains to be seen, but for now? Hulk like.
More: Today’s New York Times article about a Pennsylvania township threatened by fracking didn’t anticipate the vote’s postponement, but is still well worth the read.