Senate committee to examine water resources and energy

The US Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee will discuss authorizing an analysis of the impact of energy development and production on US water resources on March 10 at 10 a.m. in Room 366 of the Dirksen Senate Office Building.

March 10: The US Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee will discuss authorizing an analysis of the impact of energy development and production on US water resources at 10 a.m. in Room 366 of the Dirksen Senate Office Building. Witnesses will be announced later.

Why it matters: So many potential onshore US oil and gas resources are in the Rocky Mountains and Upper Plains, where water is relatively scarce and has to be closely managed. Oil shale projects would have to compete for water and demonstrate ways it can be re-used for agriculture and recreation, for example.

Beyond the West, hydraulic fracturing to produce natural gas from onshore shale formations could occur in parts of the nation which have not had extensive experience with the oil and gas industry. State and local governments, landowners and producers interested in the Marcellus Shale are discussing significant water handling issues already.

At a time when many in the oil and gas industry are concentrating more on the Obama administration's tax reform proposals, water may not seem like a very important issue. But it will be crucial as people take a closer look at developing more onshore resources.

Contact Nick Snow at nicks@pennwell.com

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