It's a victory, for sure. Although Governor Paterson declined the bill passed overwhelmingly by the House and the Senate, he instead issued an executive order which states that there will be a moratorium on Horizontal Well Hydrofracking until June of 2011.
The grandness in this victory is that we have become the first state - the first government - to legally obstruct hydrofracking, which is truly astounding. It is a great accomplishment.
Unfortunately, what Paterson did was to eliminate important restrictions concerning vertical drilling, in the name of the economy. It was vertical drilling that contaminated the water at Dimmock, PA. Although they have only drilled a few vertical wells so far in NY's Marcellus, the way is now open for more drilling.
So, this is the new fight.... to expand the restrictions on drilling to include ALL potentially dangerous forms of drilling.