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Forum News Service, Published November 20 2013

House passes Cramer bill on fracking

WASHINGTON – The House of Representatives passed a bill Wednesday that would continue to give states the authority to regulate hydraulic fracturing.

The Protecting States’ Rights to Promote American Energy Security Act, co-sponsored by Rep. Kevin Cramer, R-N.D., requires the Department of the Interior to defer to state regulations, permitting and guidance for fracking on federal lands within any given state’s boundaries.

“This legislation would remove the federal government’s constant threats of imposing its mediocrity on North Dakota’s excellence,” Cramer said in a news release.

Fracking involves pumping water, sand and chemicals into an oil or gas well to make it more productive.

The Obama administration released a proposal to create the first-ever regulation of hydraulic fracturing at the federal level on May 16.

In a visit to North Dakota in August, Interior Secretary Sally Jewell said she’s in favor of minimum federal standards for fracking. While some states such as North Dakota have rules in place, other states don’t have experience regulating fracking, she said.