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Natural Gas

Ohio Fracking Rules Test Activists

Environmentalists are looking to the Ohio House and Gov. John Kasich (R) to strengthen pending legislation that would mandate disclosure of chemicals used in oil and gas drilling, an effort that could test activists' ability to get states to adopt stricter disclosure provisions than what the Interior Department (DOI) recently proposed in its draft rule for hydraulic fracturing operations on its lands.

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Key Group Weighs Guide To Press States To Strengthen Drilling Air Rules

Pushed by environmentalists, a key multi-stakeholder group that assesses the adequacy of state oil and gas regulations is weighing a series of measures that, if adopted, would encourage states to strictly regulate emissions from the sector even before recently issued EPA regulations take effect.

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GOP Senators Charge Planned EPA Fracking Study Exceeds Statutory Scope

Senate Republicans are questioning whether EPA's proposed study on the environmental and human health impacts of hydraulic fracturing could exceed the scope of Congress' mandate for the agency to assess drinking water impacts, saying the agency's attempt to assess emissions and equity impacts is beyond the scope of its authority.

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Academies' NRC Seeks Broad Review Of Currently Ignored Fracking Risks

The National Academies' National Research Council (NRC) is preparing to undertake a preliminary review of the potential human and environmental risks of shale gas development, and in particular hydraulic fracturing, following concerns from advisers that risk studies by EPA and other agencies have failed to address the process as a whole.

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Democrats Seek Gas Flaring Hearing

Top Democrats on the House Energy & Commerce Committee are urging the panel's GOP leaders to hold a hearing on flaring, or burning off, natural gas, saying that the practice wastes valuable gas resources and noting EPA's recent gas air rules do not require flaring controls at oil wells.

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EPA's Draft Diesel Fracking Guide Raises Questions Over States' Primacy

EPA's draft guidance for how agency permit writers should regulate hydraulic fracturing wells where diesel fuels are used is sparking concerns from industry that states that oversee their own delegated programs could face pressure to conform with EPA requirements or face the loss of their primacy under the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA).

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DOI Fracking Plan Sets Weaker Chemical Disclosure Bar Than Key States

The Interior Department's (DOI) long-awaited draft hydraulic fracturing rule requires drillers to publicly disclose chemicals used in their fracking operations only after the process is completed -- an approach that is weaker than disclosure requirements in key states, including Colorado, Wyoming and Texas, which require pre-injection disclosure.

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Contested CCS Plant May Switch To Gas

A major planned coal-fired power plant in Illinois that would use carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) -- the subject of a threatened lawsuit from activists who criticize the facility's greenhouse gas limit as too weak -- could switch to natural gas to help the project advance.

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Officials See Challenges Assessing Fracking's Health Impacts

Key EPA advisers and other officials are identifying hurdles in determining local health impacts of hydraulic fracturing operations even as activists push for widespread use of such health impact assessment (HIA) models to better determine local adverse effects associated with oil and gas development and possible regulation.

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Sierra Club Seeks To Move 'Beyond Natural Gas,' Drawing New Criticisms

The Sierra Club is launching a new “Beyond Natural Gas” campaign to help intensify opposition to increased use of the fuel, a position that is at odds with the Obama administration and one that is drawing warnings from industry critics who say it shows the group is out of touch with mainstream environmentalism and is delving into extreme territory that could marginalize one of the nation's oldest environmental organizations.

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