For the second time in two years, the New Jersey Legislature has passed legislation that would prohibit the importation, processing or disposal of waste water generated during the natural-gas drilling process called fracking.
The state Assembly on Thursday voted its approval of S-1041 on a 62-16 vote. That follows
a 32-5 vote in the Senate.
In 2002, similar legislation was vetoed by Republican Gov. Chris Christie who more often than not sides with business interests, like the State Chamber of Commerce, Business and Industry Association, Chemistry Council and Petroleum Council--who all oppose the anti-fracking measure.
In passing the bill, New Jersey legislators joined lawmakers in several other northeast states that also seek to block fracking water produced by drilling companies in Pennsylvania's natural gas-rich Marcellus Shale.
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Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy last week signed into law a moratorium that outlaws the collection, storage, treatment, transfer or disposal of waste from hydraulic fracturing for at least three years. The law goes beyond a temporary ban to also require the state's Commissioner of Energy and Environmental Protection to issue new regulations that mandate the “disclosure of the composition of the waste from hydraulic fracturing."
Vermont led the pack in 2012, when it passed a law banning both fracking and the receipt of fracking wastewater.
Earlier this week, the New York Assembly passed a bill extending the state's current moratorium on fracking for three-years. No action on the bill is expected in the state Senate before the fall.
Listen to our interviews with an advocate and an opponent
On Thursday, we spoke with an advocate of the frack water ban, and with a business opponent. Click on their names to hear the interviews. Doug O'Malley and Michael Egenton.
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