Chattanooga could be a hotspot for fracking

Chattanooga could be a hotspot for fracking

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CHATTANOOGA (AP) - New state rules for hydraulic fracturing of rock to release natural gas have come about as interest builds in tapping the Chattanooga Shale formation.

The Chattanooga Times Free Press reported a half-dozen drilling companies have looked at property leases and mineral rights in Hamilton County.

A spokeswoman with the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation said no permits have been granted and none are pending locally for the so-called "fracking" method of drilling.

Industry officials say fracking does not endanger the water supply and say there is a lot of hysteria about the practice.

But UTC biology professor Henry Spratt was preparing Monday to speak to a Sierra Club meeting about his concerns. Spratt pointed to Pennsylvania, where he said some wells are so polluted they can catch fire.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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