Fracking in Florida: The Debate Continues
If you’ve been paying attention to the news even remotely over the past several years, you’ve probably heard about “fracking.” Fracking is a controversial oil drilling procedure that involves injecting sand, water, and chemicals through highly pressurized devices into rock and limestone to extract oil. Environmentalists purport these procedures harm the environment, but businesses thrive on the possibility of participating in the lucrative business of fracking. In the light of a fracking ban in New York, Florida legislators are also working to ban the practice, citing environmental studies and toxicology reports. As the practice continues in Florida, companies are facing many new challenges in the wake of this pending legislation.
Business Relations and Fracking
According to NPR News, a recent incident turned threats against fracking companies into a reality. Florida regulators issued a cease and desist order, a written demand requiring the recipient to stop engaging in the activity it specifies. Here, Florida regulators, backed by Florida’s Department of Environmental Protection, ordered an oil company to stop the work. When the company proceeded to finish the project, it paid $25,000 in fines and installed groundwater monitors, presumably as a precautionary measure.
Many oil companies that are subjected to fines simply foot the bill and continue drilling, with the fines minute in comparison to the return on the oil. A ban not only disallows fracking entirely, but will likely have an impact on local businesses, farmers, and smaller companies. New York is already feeling the hit from the recently implemented fracking ban, and local individuals and entities that benefited from fracking believe they have been “denied the opportunity to develop their mineral resources.” Landowners often lease their land to aid fracking projects, and receive a return for making the land available. Citing operational costs, property taxes, and other expenses, many New York farmers hoped to pay these costs by money they earned from leasing their land.
Proponents of fracking challenge the environmental groups that allege fracking causes harm to the environment. The Natural Resources Defense Council cites allegations of contaminated water, air pollution, and landscape devastation as some of the negatives associated with fracking. Anti-fracking groups campaign for alternative oil extraction techniques, more comprehensive ecological studies regarding the safety of fracking to air and water supply, and outright bans on the practice.
Miami, Florida Business Litigation Attorneys
Fracking has and will continue to be the center of debate for many oil companies, including those operating in Florida. These bans affect not only the oil companies, but the individuals and businesses that are both positively and adversely affected by fracking practices near their land. Our experienced Florida commercial and business litigation attorneys at Alan Goldfarb P.A. understand how policies and laws can affect how efficiently you can run your business. With significant experience in complex commercial and business litigation, we are committed to negotiating with involved parties to ensure that your business retains its purpose and functionality. If your business is facing concerns in light of the possible fracking ban, or if you have any business tensions that are affecting your ability to grow, contact us to learn more about your legal rights.