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Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper (D) said he expects the Centennial State to adopt new rules requiring oil and gas companies to publicly disclose the ingredients used in hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, fluids by the end of the year. The governor said such disclosure would "restore public confidence" in the industry. Critics contend that fracking - a process that uses injections of sand, water, and chemicals to crack open underground rock formations to access oil and natural gas deposits - can contaminate groundwater supplies. Hickenlooper, a former geologist, says such fears are overblown but that the oil and gas industry needs to show the public they are being above board in their operations. "The industry needs to be transparent," he said. "It needs to demonstrate, beyond a doubt, that this doesn't happen." Hickenlooper says the industry has been slow to agree, but is now coming around. "We've gone a long way to convincing them," he said. "More and more of the industry sees this as a good thing."
The governor also proposed a voluntary program to test groundwater around oil and gas wells before and after drilling to check for signs of contamination, with that testing paid for by the industry but performed by a third party. Results would be recorded by the state health department. (DENVER POST, DENVER BUSINESS JOURNAL, GREELEY TRIBUNE)
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