Sometimes, one vote really does make a difference. When the North Carolina state legislature attempted to override then-Governor Beverly Perdue’s veto of a bill designed to allow hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling in the Tar Heel State back in July 2012, one legislator pressed the wrong button, and was not allowed to correct her vote. With that, proponents of the law had enough votes, and historical laws banning horizontal production wells and injection wells were stricken from the books.
So now that it’s legal, where’s the North Carolina map?
Our maps section has maps for over 30 states, numerous maps of national interest, and one for British Columbia, as well. There have certainly been numerous requests from people in North Carolina in the year and a half since Governor Perdue’s veto was overridden for us to map their state.
It’s true that our small staff is still working on backlog of states to be added to our collection of shale viewer maps. It’s also true that some states produce insufficient data to map their unconventional oil and gas efforts. For example, neighboring Tennessee’s Department of Environment & Conservation has no data at all available on their website (a fact that I have verified through personal correspondence).
But in North Carolina, the reasons are different. While horizontal drilling and injection wells are now legal, essentially paving the way for development with hydraulic fracturing, the law that was passed over the veto mandated that the Mining and Energy Commission develop a regulatory framework for the modern drilling techniques. The Commission is still in the process of putting that together, and should be finished by October 1, 2014.
So stay tuned.
This post was updated on February 13, 2015 to fix a broken link and provide a more accurate estimate for the number of shale viewer maps we offer.