Study group to meet in Pittsboro Friday

Feb. 15, 2013 @ 04:59 AM

A study group helping the North Carolina Mining and Energy Commission meets Friday in Pittsboro to discuss development of local regulations for oil and gas exploration and development.

The Local Government Regulation Study Group meets from 9-11 a.m. today (Friday) at Chatham Community College Library, 197 N.C. Hwy. 87 North, Pittsboro. The public is invited to observe the meeting.

The group plans to hear from the N.C. League of Municipalities about local regulations of oil and gas exploration in other states. Depending on time, the group may also discuss how oil and gas operations could impact roads, zoning, the environment, property taxes and other areas in local communities.

The study group is required to make recommendations to the full N.C. Mining and Energy Commission on local government regulations for oil and gas exploration and development, including horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing. The commission is responsible for producing recommendations that allow for “reasonable local regulations” such as setback requirements and noise restrictions that don’t prohibit oil and gas exploration and development activities.

The North Carolina Mining and Energy Commission is required to report its findings and recommendations, including legislative proposals, to the Joint Legislative Commission on Energy Policy and the Environmental Review Commission by Oct. 1, 2013. The Mining and Energy Commission is developing a modern regulatory program to manage oil and gas exploration and development activities in North Carolina, including the use of horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing.

Learn more about the North Carolina Mining and Energy Commission at the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources’ website, http://portal.ncdenr.org/web/mining-and-energy-commission/resources.