Maryland currently has a two-year moratorium on fracking, but if all goes well, the ban could become permanent.
Lawmakers in Maryland have introduced a bill to permanently ban fracking in the state, just before the current moratorium expires. The current moratorium, which is set to last two years, expires in May of this year.
23 politicians are co-sponsoring the bill, which already has the support of nearly half of the state senate.
The original moratorium was put into place to allow time for studying the potential impacts of fracking as well as drafting regulations based on those findings. Unfortunately two years hasn’t been enough time to conduct studies, therefore no regulations have been put into place. Due to the recent findings that have tied fracking to health concerns and water contamination, opponents are done waiting.
The process of fracking, which injects chemical and sand laced water injected at high pressures into underground rock formations to release natural gas or oil, has been tied to respiratory illness and contaminated drinking water in communities close to where fracking is being utilized.
It seems residents of Maryland are on board with pushing the environmentally friendly, anti-fracking measure. Residents of Prince George’s County, which sits on a natural gas reservoir, helped push for (and pass) a county-wide ban on fracking last year.
What’s more, almost three-quarters of voters support programs that will increase the use of renewable energy and more than half support the overall ban on fracking. 40 percent of responders to a recent poll say that a vote against fracking would make them more likely to support an elected official.