The Regulatory Debate Over Hydraulic Fracturing

Law360, New York (December 23, 2011, 12:51 PM EST) -- In the past several years, hydraulic fracturing, commonly referred to as “fracking,” has become a hot-button environmental topic. The recent controversy is somewhat ironic given that hydraulic fracturing has been in commercial practice as a means of oil and gas extraction since the 1940s.

New horizontal drilling techniques and the discovery of vast new domestic supplies, however, have made formerly cost-prohibitive reserves economically feasible to extract. These developments have contributed to an exponential increase in drilling activity around the United States.

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