CHICAGO - Illinois lawmakers have approved rules that regulate hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," throughout the state.
On Thursday, the Joint Committee on Administrative Rules approved the state's fracking regulations during a hearing in Chicago. The committee has the final word on whether those rules can take effect.
Members of the committee have deliberated on how to make sure the regulations both protect the environment and are fair to the industry. Legislation allowing fracking in Illinois was passed by lawmakers approximately a year-and-a-half ago, and at the time, the legislation was seen as a compromise between pro-industry and pro-environment groups. However, pro-industry groups have complained about delays in getting rules approved, and some groups are suing the state of Illinois for failing to implement fracking.
Illinois officials say fracking permit applications will be available in the coming months.