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Ohio Opponents to Seek Moratorium on Fracking

Wed, 09/07/2011 - 6:08am
JULIE CARR SMYTH,Associated Press

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Ohio is the latest state where opponents are pushing a ban on a form of drilling that injects chemicals into shale to release natural gas.

Democratic state Sen. Michael Skindell (SKIN'-duhl) of suburban Cleveland introduced a bill Tuesday calling for a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," to await results of a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency study of potential environmental hazards.

Ohio would join New York and New Jersey among states above the fuel rich Marcellus shale if it imposes the ban. Calls for bans in West Virginia and Michigan have been unsuccessful.

Skindell also introduced a bill requiring drillers to publicly report on chemical use and disposal in the fracking process.

The Ohio Chamber of Commerce has commissioned a separate study on the potential economic benefits of gas drilling.

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