Wyden pushes for environmentally sound fracking model

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The Obama Administration is in the process of revising a proposed rule developed by the Bureau of Land Management to regulate hydraulic fracturing on public lands.

Energy and Natural Resources Committee Chairman Ron Wyden is urging them to ensure oil and natural gas production on public lands is done responsibly, keeping the environment in mind.

Wyden has strongly supported the use of new supplies of cleaner-burning natural gas to boost U.S. manufacturing, cut greenhouse gas emissions and transition to a low-carbon economy, calling it a "strategic advantage." However, common-sense protections are also necessary

Production of oil and gas at home is important to America's energy independence, but other factors should be taken into account.

"Residents of neighboring communities must have confidence in the water that they drink and the air they breathe will be free of harmful pollutants," Wyden wrote in a letter to Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar. It also noted that,"…strong environmental protections are needed for continued development of these reserves."

A properly constructed rule with sound requirements for public disclosure, well integrity, and monitoring will set a standard that both state and international governments can look to as a model for developing oil and gas resources in an environmentally responsible way, the letter concludes.

For more:
- see Wyden's letter

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