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NRDC Issues Hydrofracturing Fact Sheet

The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) reinforced its concern about hydraulic fracturing (or fracking) with a new fact sheet on the oil and gas extraction process. The fact sheet focuses on the potential for this process to contaminate drinking water supplies. NRDC points out three primary threats from surface activities associated with fracking, including depletion of water sources; spills and leaks of fracking chemicals and fluids; and mismanagement of fracking waste. NRDC also describes four major sources of threats to ground water from fracking: well construction, cementing, and casing; out-of-zone growth; neighboring oil and gas wells; and natural fracture networks.

NRDC opposes expanding fracking until there are adequate safeguards in place to protect drinking water sources from contamination. To minimize the risks, NRDC supports federal regulation of fracking under the Safe Drinking Water Act, regulation of oil and gas waste as hazardous wastes, and stronger standards and enforcement under the federal Clean Water Act and state laws. The fact sheet outlines best practices the environmental organization recommends that oil and gas producers implement to reduce the risk to sources of drinking water. To view the fact sheet go to http://www.nrdc.org/water/files/fracking-drinking-water-fs.pdf.