Heartland Institute Expert Reacts to EPA Report on Fracking and Drinking Water

Published June 5, 2015

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Thursday released a long-awaited report finding hydraulic fracturing for oil and natural gas, or fracking, does not lead to “widespread, systemic” pollution of drinking water. The report, titled “Assessment of the Potential Impacts of Hydraulic Fracturing for Oil and Gas on Drinking Water Resources,” took four years to complete. “The number of identified cases” of underground water pollution “was small compared to the number of hydraulically fractured wells,” the report stated.

The following statements from Isaac Orr, a fracking policy expert at The Heartland Institute – a free-market think tank – may be used for attribution. For more comments, refer to the contact information below. To book a Heartland guest on your program, please contact Director of Communications Jim Lakely at [email protected] and 312/377-4000 or (cell) 312/731-9364.

Orr is co-author of a Heartland Institute Policy Study titled “Hydraulic Fracturing: A Game-Changer for U.S. Energy and Economies,” and two Policy Studies on frac sand mining.

“After four yeas of studying the issue of hydraulic fracturing, more commonly known as ‘fracking,’ the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has concluded fracking is not having widespread, systemic impacts on drinking water.

“This comes as no surprise to the people who have studied the academic literature on fracking and its impacts on the environment. However, the report delivers a devastating blow to activists like Josh Fox, creator of the movie Gasland, who have made a living spreading misinformation about the dangers of the oil and natural gas extraction process.

“Hydraulic fracturing is safe. State policy makers should look to the science in the EPA report and avoid the mistakes of New York and Maryland, which have banned hydraulic fracturing.”

Isaac Orr
Research Fellow, Energy and Environment Policy
The Heartland Institute
[email protected]

The Heartland Institute is a 31-year-old national nonprofit organization headquartered in Chicago, Illinois. Its mission is to discover, develop, and promote free-market solutions to social and economic problems. For more information, visit our Web site or call 312/377-4000.