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Fracking Debate At State Capitol

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Sacramento, CA — Governor Jerry Brown’s administration has laid out a plan to regulate hydraulic fracturing in the state, but many at a state hearing argued that the rules do not go far enough.

State Senators met Tuesday to review California’s first attempts to regulate the drilling process known as “fracking.” Notably, the Governor is proposing that oil companies must disclose what chemicals they are injecting into the ground to break apart rock and release the oil.

The Associated Press reports that several lawmakers, and representatives from environmental agencies, collectively argued that additional rules need to be added. For example, they would like to require advance notice to nearby landowners, and have additional water monitoring around fracking operations.

Tuesday’s hearing lasted six hours. Lawmakers indicated that it could take up to a year to finalize the rules and regulations.

Fracking has been at the center of a national debate. Proponents argue that it reduces the country’s reliance on foreign energy, creates jobs, and can help drive down energy prices. Opponents argue that it can lead to environmental and health hazards, and should be examined more closely.

It was noted that fracking has been taking place in the state for many years, but this is California’s first effort to regulate the practice.

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