Published: June 27, 2012
By: Aaron Mintzes
Summary: The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has developed permitting guidance for hydraulic fracturing operations using diesel. The guidance is the first federal policy focused on protecting drinking water sources from hydraulic fracturing. Hydraulic Fracturing: Hydraulic fracturing is a method of extracting natural gas and oil trapped inside shale or other rock formations. Water is mixed with silicates (what industry refers to as sand) and chemicals and injected into the earth at high pressure in order to fracture the rock around the well. The gas or oil released by this “fracturing” is then pumped out. Increased use of fracturing or “fracking” along with horizontal drilling has dramatically increased the health and environmental impacts from drilling.