In the past MDN has been critical of the Marcellus Shale Advisory Commission appointed by Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley. There were supposed to provide a set of best practices for hydraulic fracturing to the state legislature and have repeatedly missed their stated deadlines to do so (see Maryland Shale Commission Misses Second Deadline for Report). The first deadline that slipped by was August 1, 2012. Then it was Dec. 31, 2012. Then they (wisely) didn’t commit but said some time in the spring of 2013.
We don’t know for sure, but perhaps their recommendations are late in coming because they’ve been waiting on the University of Maryland (UMD) to complete a report on best practices. Three weeks ago, the UMD Center for Environmental Science Appalachian Laboratory in Frostburg, Maryland, submitted a 172-page report (full copy embedded below) of recommendations for drilling and fracking best practices to the Maryland Dept. of the Environment (MDE).