Monday, August 08, 2011

EPA proposes rules on air pollution by fracking

Oil and gas drillers, long the target of laws and regulations designed to stop or limit water pollution, are now in the air-pollution crosshairs of the Enivronmental Protection Agency. The proposed rules are of special interest in areas where hydraulic fracturing is used to release natural gas from deep shales such as the Marcellus Shale in the Eastern U.S. “Some of the largest air emissions in the oil and gas industry occur as natural gas wells that have been fractured are being prepared for production,” EPA said in a fact sheet.

Environmentalists said the rules would fill a gap in regulation, but industry representatives sounded alarm. "If this becomes law, many wells will have to be plugged and abandoned, which will significantly increase oil imports and coal usage in power plants," Marcellus Coalition spokesman Travis Windel told Jim Ross of WVNS 59 News in West Virginia. (Read more)

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