US Environment Agency seeks public input on frac disclosures

Shale11 May 2014, News Wires –  The US Environmental Protection (EPA) Agency took a step towards stricter federal regulations on hydraulic fracturing, announcing plans to collect public input on whether the agency should require companies to disclose the contents of completion fluids.

The EPA on Friday released an “advanced notice of proposed rulemaking” but noted that the public comment period does not necessarily signal impending new regulations.

It is seeking input from industry, health-care and environmental groups and the public.

The moves was partly a response to a petition filed by the environmental group Earthjustice, which asked the EPA to require chemical manufacturers and processors to publicly reveal the ingredients in frac fluid.

Industry has relented on its insistence that the contents of frac fluid must remain secret and proprietary. Services giant Baker Hughes last month said it would disclose 100% of the chemical ingredients in its frac fluid, saying it was possible to do so “without compromising our formulations”.

However, peers such as Schlumberger and Halliburton said they do not intend to go as far as Baker Hughes in their disclosure policies, at least not yet.

Fracking is currently regulated by individual states. Industry groups strongly oppose federal efforts to oversee the practice.


– Upstream

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