The Chemical Industries Association (CIA) have published a fact sheet on the subject of fracking. This fact sheet is designed to answer some of the points that have been widely made about the potential downsides of fracking, and is written in a matter-of-fact and dispassionate way.
One of the more pertinent points about fracking, from an environmental legislation and measurement standpoint, is about the dangers of chemicals used in the rock fracturing process getting into underground aquifers and then, potentially into the domestic drinking water supply.
The fact sheet explains clearly that the environmental regulator (the Environment Agency in England and Wales, and the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency in Scotland) will need to approve all chemicals used in this procedure on a case-by-case basis. All chemicals used must comply with European chemicals legislation including REACH and Biocidal Products Directive. It will be interesting to see if and when any fracking licenses are granted, a testing regime is instituted to monitor groundwater and drinking water for the presence of these chemicals.
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