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NJ Bill to Ban “Fracking” Wastewater Advances

Wastewater from natural gas drilling in Pennsylvania and other states could not be treated in New Jersey under a bill advancing in the state Assembly.

The Environmental Committee released legislation Monday that bans the shipping, transporting and treating of wastewater from hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. The hearing followed the delay of a key vote by the Delaware River Basin Commission establishing regulations for drilling in the watershed.

Fracking involves injecting large amounts of water, sand and chemicals into a well to crack surrounding shale thousands of feet underground, so trapped natural gas can flow into the well.

Environmentalists fear the drilling could contaminate drinking water supplies.

While New Jersey has no shale deposits, fracking opponents says it could become a receptacle for wastewater treatment from other states.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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