Michigan Updates Oil, Gas 'Fracking' Regulations

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LANSING, Mich. (AP) The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality has updated its regulations of hydraulic fracturing or "fracking," a technique for extracting natural gas and oil from deep underground.
The Detroit Free Press (http://on.freep.com/1ltY9yz ) reports Tuesday the DEQ's revisions focus on high-volume fracking, which uses more water than older methods.
Hal Fitch of the office of oil, gas and minerals says the changes will make the process more transparent and assure adequate monitoring.
One new requirement requires baseline water well testing in the area before high-volume fracking can begin. Another requires full disclosure of types and volumes of chemicals being injected into the ground.
James Clift of the Michigan Environmental Council says the rules are a step in the right direction but contends the baseline well requirement should apply to all fracking operations.