ND May Sue EPA Over EPA`s Proposed Hydraulic Fracturing Regulation | VideoMichelle San Miguel | 11/7/2011
Gov. Jack Dalrymple introduced a disaster bill during the first day of the special session. Buried in the bill is a section that would allocate a million dollars for the state to sue the EPA if it decides to regulate the state`s hydraulic fracturing. Half of it would come from taxpayers and the other half would come from the Bank of North Dakota.
"Unfortunately the citizens are not gonna know what`s going on this legislative session because many, many issues are being crowded together in omnibus bills and this is just one example," said Sen Tim Mathern, D-Fargo.
Senator Mathern was joined by a group this afternoon who say hydraulic fracturing may be causing serious health issues for people living by the Bakken. they`re worried that fracking is contaminating water supplies and increasing cases of asthma and cancer. The oil and gas industry says it doesn`t.
North Dakota Department for Mineral Resources Director Lynn Helms said, "We have found absolutely no evidence that hydraulic fracturing endangers anybody`s health in the state of North Dakota nor has it ever."
The state`s producing more than 465,000 barrels of oil a day. that number`s increasing every day. But Helms says if the EPA ends up regulating the state`s hydraulic fracturing, drilling and fracking activity could stop for two years and oil production would drop by 30 percent every year.
All of these people who are currently employed in drilling and hydraulic fracturing would be forced to pack up and move somewhere else.
Still, Mathern says having the state sue the EPA is not the way taxpayer dollars should be used.
The oil and gas industry is the second biggest money-maker for the state. If the EPA ends up regulating the state`s hydraulic fracturing, Helms says North Dakota`s economy would take a turn for the worst.