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5 Things to know for the EPA's hydrofracking hearings next week

via Flickr
Binghamton, NY: the location of the EPA's final scheduled public hearing for a hydrofracking study.

1. Location

The hearings will be held at the Broome County Forum Theater. The hearings are not going to be held at Binghamton University. That’s where the event was originally going to be last month, but had to be rescheduled.  

2. There are actually 4 mini-hearings.

On Monday, session one is from noon to 4 p.m., session two is from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.

On Wednesday, session three is from noon to 4 p.m., session four is from 6pm to 10 p.m.

Though the action doesn't begin until mid-day, don't sleep in too late. Pre-registration begins at 10:30 a.m.

3. Protest Zones

Binghamton Mayor Matt Ryan announced there are two protest zones for people to gather in. One is for “Pro-Environment” people and the other is for “Pro-Drilling” people. That raises the question: what if you’re pro-drilling and pro-environment?

Pro Environment folks will be camping out on Henry Street in front of the federal building, and on the southern end of Washington Street, between Henry Street and East Clinton Street, on the western side of the street.

Pro Drilling folks will be on the northern end of Washington Street, between Henry Street and East Clinton Street, also on the western side of the street.

Here's a layout of the block with the designated protest zones.

4. Weather Report

Forecast for Monday in Binghamton calls for temperatures in the low 70s, with possible showers…so bring a rain poncho or umbrella if you plan to be outside. Wednesday might be worse. Temperatures are forecasted to be in the low 60s. Get the latest report here before heading out.

5. Food

There’s plenty of food around to grab a bite. Escape is one place that stands out. According to their website, they’re mission is:

“to provide a meal that is exceptional in quality and quantity at a competitive price. Food quality in the US has declined greatly due to the need for corporations to maximize profits. Taste and nutritional value have lowered in priority and their costs have been replaced with marketing techniques through mass media. Do not be fooled by a “12 sub that only costs $5. We offer gourmet sandwiches and flat-bread pizzas that burst with flavor and don’t break the bank. We take pride in every single product rather than pride in our profit margin.”

Too bad the hearings are on Monday and Wednesday, they have a “Two for Ten Tuesdays” deal. There’s also a place called Chris’ Diner one block to the east from the venue. It’s open until 7 p.m. Go a few more blocks eastward and you’ll find an Italian restaurant near the Greyhound station called Little Venice. Unfortunatley they're closed Monday's,  but for the Wednesday crowd, they're open until 10 p.m.

Can't make it to Binghamton?

We’ll be live tweeting the event on Monday @InnovationTrail and live blogging on this very website.  Also look for reports throughout the day on Innovation Trail partner stations.   You can also hear the Innovation Trail's report about the potential secondary economic effects of hydrofracking here.

Innovation Trail alumnus Ryan Morden is originally from Seattle. He graduated from the University of Washington with a bachelor's in journalism, minoring in political science and Scandinavian studies. Morden was Morning Edition producer and reporter at WRVO before moving over to the Innovation Trail project. Before landing at WRVO, Morden covered the Washington State legislature as a correspondent for Northwest News Network (N3), a group of nine NPR affiliates in the northwest.
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