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5th Illinois county supports ‘fracking’ moratorium

Updated 3:34 pm, Monday, May 20, 2013

VIENNA, Ill. (AP) — The Johnson County Board of Commissioners has passed a resolution supporting a statewide moratorium on high-volume oil and gas drilling.

Board Chairman Jeff Mears says commissioners voted 2-1 on Monday to support a one-year pause before hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” begins. He says residents need more time to learn about it, and county officials want to prepare for its impact on infrastructure, including roads.

Officials in Hardin, Jackson, Pope and Union also support a statewide moratorium.

House and Senate bills to impose a 2-year moratorium have stalled. A regulatory bill that would kick start fracking has received widespread lawmaker support.

Fracking uses high-pressure mixtures of water, sand or gravel and chemicals to crack rock and release oil and natural gas.

Supporters say it’ll create needed jobs. Opponents worry about pollution.

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