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Drilling Into Hydraulic Fracturing and the Associated Wastewater Management Issues

May 15, 2014

By LISA RUSHTON & CANDICE CASTANEDA

Hydraulic fracturing (or “fracing”) is a practice used in the oil and gas industry for more than half a century, and breaks open crude oil and natural gas bearing rock-formations to increase output at oil and natural gas wells by using high pressure fluid injection. Recently, it has been hard to go a few days without hearing of a lawsuit, proposed regulation, or new environmental study that relates to fracing. Controversies exist in part due to a level of scientific uncertainty, but also due to certain misperceptions, when combined with social media, has created a firestorm. This article briefly discusses the regulations proliferating throughout the country with regard to hydraulic fracturing fluids, and how those regulations are driving wastewater management decisions.

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