Water 2012, 4(4), 983-994; doi:10.3390/w4040983
Article

Regulation of Water Pollution from Hydraulic Fracturing in Horizontally-Drilled Wells in the Marcellus Shale Region, USA

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Received: 9 October 2012; in revised form: 16 November 2012 / Accepted: 22 November 2012 / Published: 4 December 2012
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Urban Water Management)
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Abstract: Hydraulic fracturing is an industrial process used to extract fossil fuel reserves that lie deep underground. With the introduction of horizontal drilling, new commercial sources of energy have become available. Wells are drilled and injected with large quantities of water mixed with specially selected chemicals at high pressures that allow petroleum reserves to flow to the surface. While the increased economic activities and the outputs of domestic energy are welcomed, there is growing concern over negative environmental impacts from horizontal drilling in shale formations. The potential for water contamination, land destruction, air pollution, and geologic disruption has raised concerns about the merits of production activities used during extraction. This paper looks at the impacts of horizontal drilling using hydraulic fracturing on water supplies and takes a comprehensive look at legislative and regulatory approaches to mitigate environmental risks in the Marcellus shale region. The overview identifies shortcomings associated with regulatory controls by local and state governments and offers two policy suggestions to better protect waters of the region.
Keywords: horizontal drilling; hydraulic fracturing; water pollution; governmental regulation
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MDPI and ACS Style

Hatzenbuhler, H.; Centner, T.J. Regulation of Water Pollution from Hydraulic Fracturing in Horizontally-Drilled Wells in the Marcellus Shale Region, USA. Water 2012, 4, 983-994.

AMA Style

Hatzenbuhler H, Centner TJ. Regulation of Water Pollution from Hydraulic Fracturing in Horizontally-Drilled Wells in the Marcellus Shale Region, USA. Water. 2012; 4(4):983-994.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Hatzenbuhler, Heather; Centner, Terence J. 2012. "Regulation of Water Pollution from Hydraulic Fracturing in Horizontally-Drilled Wells in the Marcellus Shale Region, USA." Water 4, no. 4: 983-994.

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