Thursday, September 14, 2017

Enviros do one-hand clapping for proposed fracking ban

Environmentalist greet ban with approval, but are less pleased with regulations that will address how fracking wastewater will be disposed of in the Delaware River basin

Tom Johnson reports for NJ Spotlight:

Delaware River
Delaware River
The Delaware River Basin Commission yesterday formally began the process of drafting new rules to ban natural gas drilling in the basin, as well as other regulations that could benefit the industry in areas not covered by the prohibition.
By a narrow margin, the commission approved a resolution directing its staff to draw up the new regulations on an issue that has caused huge controversy, including at the interstate agency.
The action, if adopted sometime next year, would ban hydraulic fracturing, the technology used to extract gas from shale formations, within the basin. At the same time, it would propose new rules governing the transfer of water for drilling outside the basin and the storage, treatment and disposal of fracking wastewater in the basin.
NJ Spotlight will explore issues affecting the Delaware River watershed and steps to protect its resources at an event at Camden County Community College tomorrow at 8:30 a.m. Follow this link to register.
In effect, the proposals would protect the resources of the Delaware River, which provides drinking water for 15 million people in four states, while at the same time regulating drilling operations in areas where they are now permitted.
The latter concerns environmentalists, who welcome the ban, but oppose water transfers out of the basin for fracking, which requires enormous amounts of water for the drilling process. They also are against disposing fracking wastewater within the basin.

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