Cash-strapped states are embracing the millions of dollars in new tax revenue coming from shale oil and gas development. But there aren't enough inspectors to make sure the sites aren't polluting. The problem seems especially apparent in Colorado, which now has more than 47,000 active oil and gas wells but the state employs just 17 inspectors.
The Obama administration today released a new set of rules for oil and gas drilling on public land. As NPR's Elizabeth Shogren reports, the rules are meant to keep companies from polluting water when they use the engineering technique known as fracking.
ELIZABETH SHOGREN, BYLINE: Hydraulic fracturing is what made the current drilling booms possible. Companies force hundreds of thousands of gallons of water, sand, and chemicals deep underground to open up cracks in the rock and make the oil or natural gas flow faster.