Companies that want to perform high-volume oil and gas drilling in Illinois may begin registering with the state. But it will be several months before companies may apply for a permit to use the drilling process known as hydraulic fracturing, or ``fracking.'' Gov. Pat Quinn signed a law regulating fracking in July. It created a two-step permit application process that requires companies to first register with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. IDNR won't accept applications for drilling permits until a legislative committee approves rules. Spokesman Chris McCloud says that process, which will include public hearings, will take months. Fracking uses high-pressure mixtures of water, chemicals and sand to crack rock formations deep underground to release oil and gas. Opponents fear it will pollute and deplete water resources.
Support Your Public Radio Station