Texas Fracking Disclosure Law Will Help Analyze Water Concerns

Texas fracking disclosure law goes into effect February 1, 2012. According to reports, on February 1, 2011, Texas drilling operators will be required to begin reporting many of the chemicals used in a process known as hydraulic fracturing. Industry sources say hydraulic fracturing is a process in which a mixture of water and chemicals is shot into the earth in order to recover excess oil and gas.

Many environmentalists and landowners have said they are looking forward to learning what toxins may have been injected in the well. However, many water experts are also interested in a less publicized part of the law which requires drilling companies to disclose the amount of water needed to frack each well. Water experts say this information will be a valuable tool in evaluating how fracking affects water supplies given the recent drought in Texas. According to the new law, Texans well be able to check the website fracfocus.org in order to view the chemical and water disclosures.

Reportedly, most fracked wells use around 1-5 million gallons of water over three to five days. On the other hand, according to a Texas Water and Development Board study, less than 1 percent of water state wide went to fracking. However, critics of the industry are quick to point out that this data is a few years old and drilling has exponentially increased in places like South Texas’ Eagle Ford Shale. Further, according to the recently published Texas Water Plan, the amount of water for hydraulic fracking is expected to increase significantly through 2020.

The Texas’ Water Board Planning Director has said that fracking is not expected to exceed 2 percent of Texas water use. However, critics say drilling can send the water numbers much higher in rural areas. Some critics suggest that in areas like the Eagle Ford Shale upwards of 40 percent of water demand will go towards hydraulic fracturing in the year 2020.

However, most researchers say predicting future water usage for drilling is tough, citing economic and technological uncertainties. One University of Texas researcher has said that some of the most important disclosed information will be whether the water comes from aquifers or reservoirs, or has been recycled from previous fracking operations.

Geologists also believe that Texas needs better information about what is in water that has been in the earth and comes up in a well in addition to oil and gas. Some researchers have suggested that this water can contain materials like grease and radioactive elements. Reportedly, Texas has not sufficiently documented such information.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: The Amaro Law Firm
R. James Amaro founded the Amaro Law Firm after gaining a wide breadth and invaluable work experience working at some of the largest national and state based law firms in Wisconsin and Texas and for a Federal judge. The Amaro Law Firm has helped countless clients who have suffered in personal injury, catastrophic injuries, damages in auto accidents, 18 wheeler wrecks, maritime accidents, insurance claims, and oil & gas lease disputes. Every year since being founded, the Amaro Law Firm has recovered millions of dollars for its clients who have been personally injured or suffered damages in business and insurance disputes. Mr. Amaro has instilled his firm and staff with his relentless drive and determination to effectively and efficiently represent the firm's clients with the utmost duty of candor and loyalty.

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Disclaimer: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer. For specific technical or legal advice on the information provided and related topics, please contact the author.

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