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Calarco Prohibits Use of Hydrofracking Brine and Protects Waterways


Bill Targets Use on County Property and Roadways

Hauppauge, LI—Legislator Rob Calarco’s bill (IR1939) prohibiting the use of hydraulic fracturing brine (fracking brine) commonly used to melt ice on roadways, will go up for a vote of the Legislature at the November 20 General Meeting. The measure is expected to pass with bi-partisan support.

Fracking brine is obtained through the highly controversial process of hydraulic fracturing mining which uses pressurized fluid to break rock formations in order to release natural gas. The gas is collected for use, but in the process, brine is produced as a toxic waste product, posing both a health and environmental concern. Specifically, some of the chemicals found in fracking brine have been linked to respiratory and other organ health problems. Furthermore, the brine, when it is used on roads as an ice-melt, is noted to pollute waterways in the form of storm runoff. Suffolk County would be the second county in New York State to ban the use of hydrofracking brine (Ulster County is the first).

“This bill will ensure that the toxic by-products of hydrofracking, which make up this brine, are not used on our roadways where they wind up in our waterways in the form of storm runoff (the number one pollution source for our waterways). The brine is known to cause pollution and damage to fisheries. The bottom line is that we simply do not want the stuff in Suffolk County,” said Leg. Calarco.