Critics blast Cuomo fracking ban

Hydraulic fracturing is now a no-no in New York state.

And that has 64-year-old Marchie Diffendorf, a lifelong resident of the rural town of Kirkwood, New York, really ticked off.

"It's angered and upset me," Diffendorf told "I think it was purely political."

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced last week that the Empire State has banned "fracking" in which natural gas and oil is extracted from deep underground by drilling through tight rock formations. Cuomo's announcement came after the state released a public health review claiming potential water contamination and air pollution outweighed any economic gains for the state.

That prompted celebration from environmental groups but condemnation from critics who say Cuomo's decision was based more on expediency than hard evidence.

"This is about politics and poorly supported fears," said Michael Lynch, the president of Strategic Energy and Economic Research Inc., an international consulting firm based in Massachusetts.

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