Shale gas panel offers olive branch to industry

Shale gas panel offers olive branch to industry
Jennifer A. Dlouhy

When a government task force said natural gas drilling wasn’t inherently dangerous to water supplies — but still urged tougher standards for the practice — most environmentalists said the industry had gotten a free pass.

Industry leaders, however, complained that the group had overlooked existing regulations and voluntary improvements — including best practices espoused by the American Petroleum Institute — that are already designed to make drilling safer.

Today, members of the panel defended their approach and offered an olive branch to gas producers.

“We’re not recommending that for the existing standard-setting groups, there be something new on top of that,” said Daniel Yergin, the head of IHS-CERA, and a member of the Energy Department’s shale gas advisory board at a Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing. “We’re trying to create an ongoing process for discussion among the players and participants in this,” whether they are regulators, drillers or local residents. (fuelfix)

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