Bloomberg News

Talisman Says Chemicals in Fracking Should Be Disclosed

June 07, 2011

(Updates with comment from official in second paragraph.)

June 7 (Bloomberg) -- Drillers in the U.S. must disclose ingredients used in fracking, a shale-gas extraction technique that environmentalists say contaminates drinking-water sources, Talisman Energy Inc. Chief Executive Officer John Manzoni said.

“It’s a good thing to be as transparent as we can be,” Manzoni said today at the Asia Oil and Gas Conference in Kuala Lumpur. “The industry is doing a better job of use of water, cleaning, disposal and in some cases, recycling the water.” Fracking poses no danger to the public, he said.

Texas, the biggest source of U.S. natural gas, plans to protect the secrecy of chemical mixtures used in hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. Exxon Mobil Corp., the largest U.S. gas producer, is mounting a campaign to defend fracking as environmentally safe, CEO Rex Tillerson said May 25.

Output of shale gas in the U.S. may more than double by 2020, leaving enough supplies available for exports, Manzoni said. Shale-gas output rose 57 percent to 4.87 trillion cubic feet in 2010, the U.S. Energy Information Administration said in April. Fracking has enabled energy explorers to extract the fuel from shale formations in Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas and Pennsylvania, previously considered impenetrable.

The EPA and lawmakers are trying to assess the safety of fracking, a technique that injects a mix of water and chemicals to break shale rock and release oil and gas. New York temporarily banned fracking on concern that the process may contaminate drinking water, while New Jersey is considering a ban and Pittsburgh has prohibited fracking within city limits.

French Environment Minister Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet said on June 1 any research using hydraulic fracturing in France would have to be “extremely strictly” controlled by a national commission.

--Editors: John Chacko, Ryan Woo

To contact the reporter on this story: Dinakar Sethuraman in Kuala Lumpur at dinakar@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Alexander Kwiatkowski at akwiatkowsk2@bloomberg.net


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