Hydraulic Fracturing Opponents Meet in Baltimore

Opponents of allowing hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” into Maryland met in Baltimore to organize their agenda for the 2013 legislative session.  According to the Baltimore Sun, they would like a moratorium on fracking.  As described,

Fracking is already on hold in the state after Gov. Martin O’Malley issued an executive order requiring a 14-member commission to produce a report on its potential effects. But environmentalists want to enshrine the moratorium in law and give the General Assembly the final say on whether drilling permits should be issued once the study is completed.

As reported in the Washington Post, advocates argue that fracking, if done with appropriate precautions, would bring needed industry into the state. They support funding a study of the issue.  As described,

In Garrett County, where residents lost potential income when oil companies tired of Maryland’s delays and took their operations elsewhere, Commissioner Jim Raley (R) said everyone should put aside their differences and negotiate.

“I believe the analysis should be done,” Raley said. “It really comes down to the issue of fracking, can it be done in a safe and prudent manner. But if the state can benefit from it, the industry can benefit, and the county can benefit, maybe . . . we each should fund it.”

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