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Industry Groups Back Fracking Chemical Registry

America's Natural Gas Alliance (ANGA), the Independent Petroleum Association of America and the American Exploration & Production Council said Thursday they support a recently announced effort to disseminate information on chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing (fracking).

"The natural gas community is committed to the safe and responsible development of this clean energy resource," said ANGA CEO Regina Hopper. "That commitment means being responsive to the questions raised in communities where we work. It is our hope that with this greater transparency will come greater public confidence in the safety of the hydraulic fracturing process."

The Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission (IOGCC) and the Ground Water Protection Council (GWPC) in October announced their effort to create a state-based system for disclosing the contents of fracking fluids on a public registry (see Shale Daily, Oct. 21) The Chemical Registry for Hydraulic Fracturing, which is expected to take one year and approximately $3 million to complete, would create and maintain a national chemical registry for fracking that is user-friendly and available to the public, first responders and emergency personnel. The system would be an extension of the current Risk Based Data Management System used by a majority of producing states.

The GWPC has called for a complete disclosure of chemicals used in the fracking process (see Daily GPI, Sept. 30).

Operators across the country are under increasing pressure to disclose what chemicals they use in the fracking process, which are used to develop most of the shale gas wells in the country. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar on Tuesday said the department is weighing how it will move forward with a policy requiring producers to disclose the fluids associated with fracking on public lands (see Shale Daily, Dec. 1a). Interior's Bureau of Land Management oversees 250 million acres, which contains 11% of the nation's natural gas supply.

In New York, Gov. David Paterson has until Dec. 13 to either sign or veto legislation that would place a moratorium on fracking permit approvals until May 15 (see Shale Daily, Dec. 1b). The moratorium would give state lawmakers "time to assess the true environmental impacts of horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing" in the Marcellus and Utica shales, according to the bill. The Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission implemented similar regulations in August (see Daily GPI, Aug. 31).

Rule changes being considered by the Arkansas Oil and Gas Commission would require companies to reveal all of the chemicals they will use during fracking operations at new natural gas wells in the state prior to fracking (see Shale Daily, Nov. 2).

Several companies have said they said they will voluntarily disclose what chemicals they use in their fracking operations; Range Resources Corp., Chief Oil and Gas LLC and Halliburton are among those already posting such information on their websites.

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