Gas-storage plans in Finger Lakes draw outcry

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May 6, 2013

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - A natural gas storage and transportation hub being developed in depleted salt mines in western New York's Finger Lakes region is the latest flash point in the ongoing battle over hydraulic fracturing.

A dozen protesters were arrested last month for blocking access to the salt cavern site on Seneca Lake. They've vowed more civil disobedience if Gov. Andrew Cuomo approves hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, in the Marcellus shale gas formation.

Kansas City, Mo.-based Inergy Midstream bought the U.S. Salt plant on Seneca Lake in 2008 and wants to expand operations. Gas has been stored for decades in former salt mines and the industry says it can be done safely.

Opponents worry about increased train and truck traffic hurting the wine and tourism industry. They also fear industrial accidents.

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