OLR Bill Analysis
AN ACT CONCERNING HYDRAULIC FRACTURING WASTE IN CONNECTICUT.
This bill permanently bans collecting, storing, handling, transporting, disposing, and using hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) waste in Connecticut (see BACKGROUND). Under current law, these activities are banned only until the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) commissioner adopts regulations to, among other things, control fracking waste as hazardous waste. The bill removes his authority to adopt such regulations and places a permanent ban on fracking waste in the state.
EFFECTIVE DATE: Upon passage
FRACKING WASTE BAN
Under the bill, no person, including an individual, business, or political subdivision of the state, may:
1. accept, receive, collect, store, treat, transfer, or dispose of fracking waste;
2. collect or transport fracking waste for receipt, acceptance, or transfer in the state; or
3. sell, offer, barter, manufacture, distribute, or use an anti-icing, de-icing, pre-wetting, or dust suppression product derived from or containing fracking waste.
The bill eliminates a provision that allows a person to collect or transport fracking waste if the person obtains a DEEP permit before bringing the waste into the state.
The bill also deletes a provision that allows certain fracking waste research to be conducted in the state. Under current law, until the commissioner adopts regulations, DEEP may approve up to three requests to treat up to 330 gallons of fracking waste for research purposes or a single person to treat up to 500 gallons. The research must be for determining whether fracking waste can be made suitable for use or reuse.
Fracking waste includes wastewater, wastewater solids, brine, sludge, drill cuttings, or any other substance used or generated in the fracking process.
Fracking is the process of pumping fluid into or under the surface of the ground to create fractures in rock for natural gas exploration, development, production, or recovery. It does not include drilling or repairing a geothermal water well or any other well drilled or repaired for drinking water purposes.