wyden

Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Chairman Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) floated a proposal Thursday to let states regulate fracking underground while permitting the federal government to set reporting and disclosure requirements.

The framework Wyden laid out would affect fracking, or hydraulic fracturing, across the country, setting it apart from an ongoing process led by the Interior Department that covers only federal land. Much of the U.S. shale energy boom has occurred on private and state land left untouched by the draft Interior rule, making Wyden’s proposal a hefty one.

“I want to explore the idea of giving the states a really broad berth, a really key role, on what happens below ground, while the federal government could have a leadership role on a number of the key issues above ground, such as disclosure, and still reporting,” Wyden said at a Washington, D.C., event hosted by the Bipartisan Policy Center.