The controversy over fracking and the environment is a leading discussion topic for political candidate.
Obama proposed that the FY 2012 budget allocate $14 million toward fracking research. The budget will include a dedicated study involving the impact of hydraulic fracturing, including air quality and effects fracking might have on the ecosystem. The study will work in conjunction with the U.S. Geological Survey and the Department of Energy.
The EPA will face a budget cut of 1.2% or $105 million cut in funding, which will be hard to work with said, EPA Administrator, Lisa Jackson.
The EPA’s total research budget is a total of $576 million, which includes $81 million for the agency’s STAR grants, which will support research on fracking, potential endocrine disruptors, and green infrastructure.
The preliminary results of their current study on the impact of fracking to drinking water supplies will be expect at the end of the year and includes areas of Marcellus Shale drilling in Pennsylvania
Jackson said that the budget decrease this year will be difficult,
“This budget is focused on fulfilling EPA’s core mission to protect health and the environment for millions of American families,” said Jackson. It demonstrates fiscal responsibility, while still supporting clean air, healthy waters and innovative safeguards that are essential to an America built to last.”
Much concern from the EPA and other environmental activist groups was the efforts to provide the public with a list of available chemicals used in fracking. An $11 million increase in the budget has been set to provide the public with greater access to toxic chemicals information. A 5.8% budget increase will also be made in compliance and enforcement.