What is hydraulic fracturing? Hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” is a method of extracting natural gas that involves blasting underground rock thousands of feet into the ground with a cocktail of sand, water and chemicals.
Why now in NC? Vast underground reserves called shale basins were long thought impractical to drilling because of their depth; “fracking” would allow NC reserves to be processed.
Why should YOU be concerned?
1.Documented health risks (6 states with 1000 instances of groundwater contamination).
2.Large amounts of fresh water used and large amounts of wastewater generated with limited disposal options.
3.Inadequately regulated (2005 federal loophole exempting fracking from environmental regulation); spills, regulatory penalties, and litigation linked to fracturing operations have been reported in several states.
Where are the shales in North Carolina? The following 14 NC counties could be affected by fracking: Stokes, Rockingham, Granville, Orange, Durham, Chatham, Wake, Lee, Moore, Richmond, Montgomery, Anson, Davie and Yadkin.
What are current NC laws on fracking?
Senate Bill 820 (passed July 2012) legalized hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling. It also set up a Mining and Energy Commission and allows “forced pooling” of land.
Senate Bill 76 (SB76) “The Domestic Energy and Jobs Act” was passed by the legislature and became law in July, 2013. The final version of the bill promotes offshore drilling, but it does NOT include some of the worst provisions proposed by the Senate, including allowing underground injection of fracking wastes, and fast-tracking permitting before regulations are completed!
HB 74 was signed into law in August, 2013, guts protections for landfills and groundwater, also limits environmental ordinances.