Sunday, 20 May 2012 20:36
News and Observer
By John Murawski
North Carolina?s flirtation with fracking is increasingly looking like the real thing, with Republican lawmakers poised to pass sweeping legislation this summer that would lead to drilling for natural gas.The state may have just a fraction of the enormous natural gas reserves found in Texas and Pennsylvania. But fracking here will likely entail greater risks to drinking water supplies and may require special measures not used in other states.
North Carolina?s natural gas reserves are much closer to groundwater than in other states, and the rock in between is not watertight and could permit potent fracking chemicals to work their way upward and contaminate the aquifers, state regulators say. State officials will take at least several years developing safeguards to protect residents, farm animals, crops and natural habitats from the hundreds of chemicals used in the process of fracking. The chemicals ? used to kill bacteria, prevent well corrosion and to thicken fracking fluids ? for years had been regarded proprietary and kept secret.
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