Athens County Fracking Report

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The committee charged with looking into the potential impacts of hydraulic fracturing issued its final report to the Athens County Commission Wednesday.

The Athens County Strategic Advisory Committee has been examining the issue since April.

The chairman of the eight-member committee, Al Blazevicius says if the practice of hydraulic fracturing, also known as fracking comes to Athens County the biggest issue would be disposal of the fluids used to fracture the rock underground.

"The most immediate and foreseeable concern is the increase in disposal waste and to figure out how to deal with that" stated Blazevicus.

Blazevicius says that the committee also made several recommendations related to how to handle the waste fluid.

"We are also recommending lobbying at the state level for a tax on out of state waste" said Blazevicius.

Other recommendations included proposing measure preventing illegal waste dumping and testing for water contamination.

Blazevicius says horizontal drilling won't happen in the near future.

Blazevicius said "I don't see it being likely in the next five to ten years".

Blazevicius says that if and when fracking comes to Athens County the report by the commission will provide the framework needed to best deal with this practice.