Fracking rule-making panel in NC sits down to work

POSTED: 6:55 AM Sep 06 2012
RALEIGH -

(AP) - The Mining and Energy Commission created by state lawmakers this year is holding its first orientation meeting on Thursday.

The 12-member panel and state employees working with it will develop new rules on a process called horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing that frees untapped underground deposits of oil and gas.

North Carolina's environmental agency said in a report earlier this year that fracking could be safe if regulated properly.

The U.S. Geological Survey estimated this summer that North Carolina has enough natural gas trapped in shale rock to supply the state for less than 6 years. Earlier estimates were there was a 40-year supply.