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Fracking foes rally before hearing

NEW YORK CITY — Gas-drilling opponents are lined up to tell state regulators what they think of proposed rules for natural gas development using hydraulic fracturing.

They were rallying Wednesday in Manhattan, where the last of four public hearings on proposed regulations was being held.

It’s a hot issue in New York City, which gets its drinking water from upstate reservoirs.

Fears of contamination of the city’s watershed prompted a moratorium on drilling permits in 2008. The state Department of Environmental Conservation began a review of regulations.

Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, injects millions of gallons of chemical-laced water into a well to release gas.

Opponents fear accidents and contamination. The industry touts its safety record.

If the regulations are enacted, drilling in the Marcellus Shale in upstate New York could begin next year.