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Hydraulic Fracturing Research

hydraulic fracturing drill

Natural gas plays a key role in our Nation’s clean energy future. Embedded in underground formations, natural gas—as well as oil— is often extracted using a method called hydraulic fracturing. In hydraulic fracturing, fluids are injected at high pressures into the ground, creating cracks in the underground formation that release natural gas or oil to the surface.

Technological advances such as horizontal drilling have increased access to natural gas. With greater access, however, come new questions about the impact of extraction activities on environmental and human health.

EPA conducts research to better understand the relationship between hydraulic fracturing and drinking water resources.

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