API says fracking rules strong enough

Jan. 21, 2013 at 7:53 AM
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WASHINGTON, Jan. 21 (UPI) -- The American Petroleum Institute said there are enough state regulations for U.S. natural gas development to embrace the practice.

The U.S. Bureau of Land Management last week confirmed to energy reporting website Rigzone that it was proposing a "common sense and achievable" rule for hydraulic fracturing of natural gas. The bureau said it was issuing a draft proposal on fracking regulations as industry leaders criticize the government for strict oversight.

API President Jack Gerard said the BLM's proposal was a step in the right direction, though the "real test" would be in what comes from the proposal.

"Effective regulation of hydraulic fracturing already exists in the states," he said in a statement. "Conflicting or duplicative federal requirements would delay development of abundant domestic oil and natural gas and threaten jobs and revenue to the federal treasury, without providing additional environmental protection."

BP Chief Executive Officer Bob Dudley said last week that BP predicted the "shale revolution" in the United States could make the country nearly energy independent by 2030.

Environmental groups opposing the exploration of unconventional resources have expressed concern that controversial extraction methods may be too great of a risk to pursue.

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