Supporters of high-volume oil and gas drilling say a bill to regulate the practice in Illinois is ready for a vote after last-minute negotiations over hiring and environmental concerns.
The House bill initially had strong support in February but stalled over an amendment requiring energy companies to hire Illinois-licensed water well drillers. Instead, companies will get a break on certain taxes if more than half their workers are from Illinois and receive prevailing wages.
Some Johnson County Illinois residents are asking their county commissioners to consider supporting a 2-year moratorium on hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” as oil and gas companies continue to look at southern Illinois land for extraction.
Johnson County Economic Development Director Ronald Duncan said if fracking begins it could bring some money the county’s way.
“If we take examples of the economic impact that it’s had in other places,” he said.” I’m thinking specifically of southeastern Ohio, the Dakotas. You see this very, very strong impact up front. A lot of people coming to town, a lot of trucks, a lot of lunches sold at the counter. Just the sheer number of people doing that work coming in perhaps could boost the retail trade here in our community significantly.”
Gov. Pat Quinn is praising a bill that would regulate high-volume oil and gas drilling in Illinois, saying it'll help the economy. Two state lawmakers have introduced a bill that would establish ground rules for hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking."
The method uses high-pressure mixtures of water, sand or gravel and chemicals to crack open rock formations and release oil and gas. The industry is eyeing southern Illinois' New Albany shale. Quinn says he's committed to protecting the environment and creating jobs.
From NPR: The new movie Promised Land will have many energy industry insiders rolling their eyes with its portrayal of hydraulic fracturing. Fracking proponents are using the opportunity to inform people about their side of the story.
A Tennessee worker who supervises the state’s regulation of oil and gas production says opponents of hydraulic fracturing are, in his words, “stupid.” Michael Burton’s comment was found in handwritten notes on emails sent to the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation. The emails solicited public comment on new regulations for hydraulic fracturing. The process, also known as fracking, extracts natural gas from rock by injecting high pressure mixtures of sand, water or gravel and chemicals.