Abstract:Recent technological advancements in hydraulic fracturing have enabled the oil and gas industry to access shale gas. While it is estimated that shale gas, a clean source of energy, will account for 20% of the total U.S. gas supply by 2020, there have been serious concerns about potential adverse impacts of fracking on the environment and public health. Consequently, a patchwork of regulations has evolved in the United States to cope with the competing concerns of environmentalists and the oil and gas industry. After an overview of the technical aspects of the fracking process and environmental concerns, this article examines the successes and shortcomings of the statecentric regulatory system and the potential application of America’s regulatory scheme as a model for entrants into fracking. It reviews federal regulation of fracking and the comprehensive regulatory systems that vary from state-to-state.
Keywords:Constitutional demarcation of state and municipal compe tence; environmental protection; federal legislation; fracking; hydraulic fracturing; land use regulation; natural gas; preemption of municipal legislation; regulation
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