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EPA says pollution may be linked to gas wells

Fracking may have tainted water in Wyo.

(David Zalubowski/Associated Press/File 2009)
By Mead Gruver
Associated Press / December 9, 2011
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The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced yesterday for the first time that fracking - a controversial method of improving the productivity of oil and gas wells - may be to blame for causing groundwater pollution. The draft finding could have significant implications while states try to determine how to regulate the process. Environmentalists characterized the report as a significant development though it met immediate criticism from the oil and gas industry and a U.S. senator.

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How it works
Hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,’’ involves pumping pressurized water, sand, and chemicals underground to open fissures and improve the flow of oil or gas to the surface.