Wastewater a key issue in NY's fracking debate

How to handle millions of gallons of contaminated wastewater after gas drilling begins in New York's Marcellus Shale region remains unsettled as the state considers final regulations.

Some environmental advocates say it's a glaring gap in preparations.

In the Department of Environmental Conservation's environmental review and proposed regulations for hydraulic fracturing, there are three options for waste disposal:

-- Truck it to an approved treatment facility and either discharge the treated water into a river or reuse it for another drilling project;

-- Ship it to a deep-well injection site; or

-- Recycle it on-site for drilling multiple wells.

DEC Commissioner Joe Martens says permit applications must include details about how the wastewater will be handled, choices left to the drillers.


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