EPA Science Advisory Board (SAB)

Hydraulic Fracturing Research Plan

EPA Designated Federal Officer (DFO):Edward Hanlon
Responsible Committee/Panel:Environmental Engineering Committee Augmented for Hydraulic Fracturing Review
A list of members can be found in the final report included in the Advisory Activity linked to this panel or committee.

See EPA’s PDF page to learn more about PDF files.

In its Fiscal Year 2010 Appropriation Conference Committee Directive to EPA, the U.S. House of Representatives approved a provision that urges EPA to conduct analyses to assess the potential risks to drinking water posed by hydraulic fracturing of formations including coalbeds and shale for extraction of natural gas. Hydraulic fracturing (or hydrofracking) generates vertical and horizontal fractures in underground geologic formations to facilitate extraction of gas (or oil) from the subsurface.

To meet the Congressional request, EPA’s Office of Research and Development (ORD) has developed a draft approach to gather existing data and information including a stakeholder input process; to catalog potential risks to drinking water supplies from hydraulic fracturing; to identify data gaps; and to develop research questions, research needs, and research products.

ORD is seeking advice from the SAB regarding planned research strategies to address public health and environmental protection issues regarding hydraulic fracturing performed for extraction of natural gas from geologic formations.
Agency Review Document(s):

PDF for Scoping Materials for Initial Design of EPA Hydraulic Fracturing Research Study . (PDF, 12 pp., 114,076 bytes)