Utah Governor Gary Herbert and Utah's congressional delegation today criticized a newly announced ruling by the Obama Administration that would duplicate Utah's efforts to manage hydraulic fracking on public and Indian lands. The rule announced today by the U.S. Department of the Interior would require public disclosure of all methods used during the process to extract oil and gas on public and Indian lands. The State of Utah already works with energy producers in this area and has a proven track record of ensuring public safety and the proper disclosure of fracking fluids.
HERBERT: "This is a political solution in search of a non-existent problem. There is positively no need for the federal government to insert itself into a process that is already working well on the state level. Today's proposed fracking rule does nothing but add unnecessary red tape, decrease investment and jobs in rural western states, and increase the amount of energy the United States imports from foreign energy sources."
HATCH: "While the Interior Department says that this is a "commonsense' approach, the fact is that the Obama Administration is trying to add another layer of bureaucracy and pushing its "Washington knows best' mentality. Water quality questions are best left to the states. Some of brightest minds in the oil and gas industry work for the State of Utah. These are the people who are the closest to the land and they have the biggest stake in making sure our resources -- and our citizens -- are protected. Utahns are fully capable of managing ourselves; we don't need to be watched over by bureaucrats in Washington."
LEE: "Once again, the federal government is imposing its will upon a matter that should be left to the states. State governments have been successfully regulating hydraulic fracturing since the method was first developed, and it is the states that have proven to be good stewards of the land in question. The BLM's new rule is yet another unnecessary overreach of the federal government, pursued in an election year to rally President Obama's extreme environmentalist friends. This rule will restrict America's energy production at a time when it is desperately needed and serves only as a distraction from the president's own failed energy policies."
MATHESON: "States already have the tools necessary to regulate hydraulic fracturing and they have effectively used those tools for decades. This decision to move forward adds an unnecessary layer of bureaucracy to a regulatory process that already works."
BISHOP: "States have proven to effectively regulate hydraulic fracturing since it was first introduced over 60 years ago as a way to extract oil and natural gas. These new regulations are just the latest of the Administration's thinly veiled efforts to snuff out selective forms of energy production in this country. Energy producers already find it difficult to access and produce energy resources located on our public lands. These new mandates will further discourage production, which will have a devastating impact on many communities and states throughout the West."
CHAFFETZ: "Federal regulation of hydraulic fracturing is duplicative and costly. 'Fracking' is already regulated by the states. The Administration's draft rule would slow down an already sluggish permitting process. This will cost rural western communities jobs and harm our nation's energy security."