It wasn't long ago that American policymakers were bemoaning our increased dependance on natural gas imports, among other energy sources. However, a sudden turnaround of the domestic natural gas industry due to the effective but controversial process of hydrualic fracturing (or "fracking") has led to a domestic supply sufficient to serve the country's needs for 100 years or more, some say.
This unexpected natural gas production boom has left federal and state regulators in the business of reacting to a technological process (and its effects) that about which we are still learning. Added to that political fuel mix are a series of questions about whether state or federal government ought to assume the primary regulatory role: Should Congress pass federal licensing rules or standards for the industry? Should the EPA impose restrictions to fill in the gaps between states? Or, by focusing on state-by-state regulatory experiments happening simultaneously, will we all arrive at better solutions, faster?
Join Dr. David Spence in an interesting legal and economic anlaysis of natural gas regulation in the latest Energy Brief from the Energy Management and Innovation Center.