Geologists in Ohio have for the first time linked earthquakes in a geologic formation deep under the Appalachians to hydraulic fracturing, leading the state to issue new permit conditions Friday in certain areas that are among the nation's strictest.
CLEVELAND - A U.S. Environmental Protection Agency official tells an Ohio fracking conference that a study of the threat to drinking water from the shale-drilling process won't be completed until 2016.
That's the word from Jeanne Briskin, coordinator of hydraulic fracturing research at the EPA's Office of Research and Development. She spoke Tuesday at a two-day conference on the subject in Cleveland.
The Akron Beacon Journal reports that Briskin said the EPA could release a preliminary report late next year. She described the work as "complex research."
Congress in 2010 directed the agency to investigate the threat to groundwater and air from the controversial hydraulic-fracturing process in Ohio and other states.
Critics say it is harmful to the environment.
The conference continues Wednesday.
Shell, Europe's largest oil company, will stop drilling for oil in Alaska this year as it cuts back on investments and tries to reverse a steep drop in earnings.