Saturday, April 30, 2011

South Africa won't finalize applications for hydralic fracturing until investigations are done

From Engineering News.Co.Za  by Loni Prinsloo
April 29th, 2011

South Africa’s Mineral Resources Minister Susan Shabangu on Friday said that her department would not accept any new, nor would it finalise any existing, applications to explore for natural gas in the Karoo region until an expert study into the appropriateness of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, of the region’s shale gas resources had been finalised.

The statement followed a Cabinet-backed moratorium against natural gas drilling announced last week.
“Given the intensity and scale of the issue and the fact that shale gas exploration has never been done before on our shores, my department will conduct a comprehensive study which will assist us to formulate our approach, after which we will go back to Cabinet,” said Shabangu.

The Department of Mineral Resources noted that it was contemplating sending a team of experts to other jurisdictions where fracking had been carried out before, to gather relevant information.

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