Shale producers should take seriously the questions and issues being raised by environmentalists and others with concerns about hydraulic fracturing (fracking), and be "open and transparent" about the composition of their fracking fluids, FERC Commissioner John Norris said Tuesday.
"My concern is not necessarily with fracking. My concern is that industry get it right" and that it answer the "appropriate questions" being raised about the fracking procedure used to develop shale, he told the Natural Gas Roundtable in Washington, DC.
"I have more concerns about handling it right than there actually is serious environmental problems" related to fracking, Norris said.
Speaking to regulators, energy executives and trade group officials, he urged industry to "take serious the folks who are raising [the] questions so that...all the bets that are being placed on natural gas continue to go forward."
Norris signaled his support for disclosure of the chemicals that producers use in their fracking. "I think the use of the term 'special sauce' [for proprietary fracking fluids] doesn't serve the industry well," he told the roundtable.
The nation's energy future will be driven by economics and technology, such as "cutting edge" fracking technology, Norris said. This is "marvelous for our country going forward. I don't think our answer is just to go deeper and wider."