What? Fracking in Virginia? Not yet. Gas prices are too low to spur gas drillers into expanding to new geographic areas. But the oil & gas industry sees potential in the Taylorsville Basin north and east of Richmond, most notably in King George County. Meanwhile, reports Jim Pierobon in Southeast Energy News, a regulatory review, launched in 2013, is reaching its final stages.
There are two sets of issues: (1) updating fracking standards, said to be the least stringent of any state with shale production, and (2) settling whether local governments have the authority to ban fracking. Former Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli declared that localities do not have the authority, but his successor Mark Herring said last year that they do.
The State Review of Oil and Natural Gas Environmental Regulations (STRONGER), initiated at the behest of the Environmental Protection Agency, is funded by the American Petroleum Institute but comprised of a wide spectrum of stakeholders. The group is scheduled to meet in Abingdon next month to complete the review.
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