Commission approves final fracking rules, leaves public comment out

Media Releases

Media Contacts

Environment North Carolina

Raleigh, NC.- After just three meetings of deliberation, the Mining and Energy Commission finalized its package of 120 rules to govern fracking, the controversial driling technique that could begin in North Carolina as soon as May of next year. Commissioners made few changes to reflect the more than 217,000 public comments they received.

“These rules are a totally inadequate, and the process by which they’ve been rushed through to adoption is irresponsible,” said Liz Kazal, Environment North Carolina field associate. “These rules make clear that the only way to truly protect our air and water is to keep fracking out of the state.”

The majority of public comments urged stricter regulations on the distance fracking wells could be from a home or dwelling and the use of open pits for storing toxic waste.  A majority of commenters also criticized the Commission’s failure to propose any restrictions on air pollution. These sections received little to no changes.
“Fracking has contaminated drinking water and made people sick across the country,” said Kazal. “The rules adopted today won’t even come close to protecting North Carolinians’ air and water.”

Several commissioners echoed the concerns of clean water advocates that the entire rule-making, especially the process of of reviewing, incorporating, and discussing public comments, was moving too quickly. 

Next, the rule package will go to the Rules and Review Commission, and then on to the General Assembly.

“I urge the Governor and leaders in the General Assembly to reject these rules and reinstate our fracking moratorium to protect our drinking water,” said Kazal.

staff | TPIN

Our wild planet is calling on you this Earth Day

From buzzing bees to howling wolves, and from ancient forests to sprawling coastlines, our natural world is a gift that keeps on giving. Will you donate today to help keep it that way?