Aug 9, 2011

NM Oil and Gas Proposes Fracturing Disclosure Rule

Santa Fe, New Mexico, August 8, 2011 - The New Mexico Oil and Gas Association today filed a proposed rule with the New Mexico Oil Conservation Division that would require disclosure of the composition of hydraulic fracturing fluids for new and recompleted oil and gas wells. “Because some companies have historically sought to protect the composition of their hydraulic fracturing fluids as a trade secret, wild speculations bordering on conspiracy theories have emerged,” said Steve Henke, President of New Mexico Oil & Gas Association. “By proactively calling for disclosure in New Mexico, the industry is expressing its confidence in the proven safety record of the process and embracing transparency.”
Hydraulic Fracturing Explained: After a well is drilled, a mixture of pressurized freshwater, sand, and a specifically formulated fracturing compound is pumped thousands of feet down to create tiny, millimeter-thick fissures in targeted sections of rock. These tiny fractures free the trapped oil and natural gas. The process of hydraulic fracturing occurs at great depths – generally a mile or more underground, thousands of feet below freshwater supplies. Hydraulic fracturing, also know as "frac'ing” is a proven technology that has been used for more than 60 years to safely enhance the production of natural gas and oil from more than one million wells in the United States. In New Mexico, the majority of the 52,000 oil and gas wells currently in production have undergone fracturing. NMOGA Chairman Jason Sandel said, “NMOGA is proposing a common sense and scientifically-based approach to regulating our industry. We want to assure New Mexicans our industry operates safely and in an environmentally responsible manner. While extremists often vilify our industry, oil and gas development is good for New Mexico and the state’s communities and citizens.” A hearing on the proposed rule is expected to begin later this year. A copy of the proposed rule is available here: News New Mexico

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