(via U.S. Environmental Protection Agency)

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources is seeking public feedback on the state's first-ever regulations for high-volume oil and gas drilling.

The DNR published proposed regulations for hydraulic fracturing today, which begins a public comment period that will last until Jan. 3.

Gov. Quinn Signs New Fracking Regulations

Jun 17, 2013
(via Flickr/jglazer75)

Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn signed legislation Monday giving the state the nation's strictest regulations for high-volume oil and gas drilling.

In a news release, Quinn says the law will "unlock the potential" for thousands of jobs in southern Illinois while protecting the environment. Quinn's signature was expected after the measure sailed through the Illinois Legislature.

(via Flickr/jglazer75)

Reporting from Chris Slaby.

A measure that would regulate hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” heads to the full Illinois House after Representatives approved it at a hearing Tuesday.

The plan, which passed unanimously, comes two months after a previous version appeared to have enough momentum to go before the House. It stalled over environmentalists’ raised concern there was not enough protection to keep water wells from becoming contaminated.

Unions were also divided over a labor dispute.

(via Flickr/jglazer75)

Dozens of environmentalists and land owners are meeting with lawmakers in Springfield hoping to persuade them to temporarily ban high-volume oil and gas drilling in Illinois.
Opponents of hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," held a rally and lobbied Illinois legislators yesterday. They're hoping to win support for a two-year moratorium on the practice instead of regulations that would allow it.
Fracking opponents say they were ignored during negotiations over a regulatory bill, which proponents say would give Illinois the nation's toughest regulations.

Brian Mackey/Illinois Public Radio

Brian Mackey contributed reporting from Springfield, Ill.

It was an odd sight at the Illinois state Capitol today - supporters of the oil and gas industry sharing a podium with environmental activists.

(via Flickr/jglazer75)

Illinois legislation is advancing that would regulate decades-old but debated technology used to reach previously inaccessible natural gas reserves deep underground.

The state Senate on Thursday unanimously sent to the House a bill addressing hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. That technology involves using mixtures of water, sand and chemicals to free below-ground energy reserves.

Senate Bill 3280 comes as energy companies are pushing to prospect possible drilling sites using fracking in southern Illinois.