I understand that fracking is economically and politically important, and best I can tell these loopholes were created to let the industry experiment and grow without too much overhead. I’m also not really a fan of overregulation or pointless inefficiencies of bureaucracy for its own sake.
That all said, it’s pretty clear that large, non local companies don’t have much incentive to protect small communities water supply, and seem to rarely act in the interest of the population where they are profiting, rather than their shareholders.
This is particularly true for oil and gas, because the nature of a non renewable resource is that you don’t need to invest in keeping it viable, you can suck it all up and move on, so any local economic benefit that might offset environmental harm is likely temporary.
Addressing that balance of interests is basically what government is for, right? Incentivizing behavior that may be costly but is for the greater good, while punishing behavior that is beneficial for the few but harmful for the community as a whole?
So, if this is the best way to do that, great, let’s get fracking consistent with all these acts that are meant to protect the vulnerable from the powerful, because that’s what is just.
If it’s not the best way because these acts are needlessly complex, or outdated, or were always just messy and political and not that useful, then do something better. If the states should manage this, then create some political accountability (or, again, incentives) so they do.
Whatever you do, don’t skip doing the work of governing to align with partisan or historic interests. Communities with damaged water are going to become an economic sinkhole, burden, and embarrassment for states - and countries - that don’t protect them.
Well, that got long. Oops. Sorry?