Emerging regulatory gaps in fracking-specific water security issues in India: Lessons from the United States ‘Shale Revolution’

Yadav, Shashi Kant, Bhardwaj, Chhaya and Sarangi, Gopal K (2024) Emerging regulatory gaps in fracking-specific water security issues in India: Lessons from the United States ‘Shale Revolution’. Environmental Law Review. ISSN 1461-4529

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India has characterised shale gas as a transitional energy source and is planning to commercially scale the extraction of shale gas through hydraulic fracturing (fracking). Currently, India has announced 56 fracking projects spread across six Indian states. In doing so, exploration of shale gas resources has started in India. The regulations that govern conventional extraction processes are also applicable to fracking activities. The conflation of fracking with conventional drilling processes in India's regulatory approach may have implications for the country's water security, given the unique risks that fracking poses to water resources. This article analyses India's regulatory framework applicable to fracking-specific water (FSW) issues. In doing so, this article identifies four key paradigms of water security and maps these key paradigms with the US fracking experience, identifying four key FSW issues. Subsequently, this article evaluates if India's multilevel regulatory system regulates the identified four FSW issues. In conclusion, this research finds that before commercially scaling fracking operations, India must conduct a scientific inquiry on the impact of proposed fracking projects on its water resources. In doing so, it must re-examine its regulations at the federal and state levels to comprehensively cover FSW issues.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Hydraulic fracturing | India | Water security | Multilevel legal system
Subjects: Social Sciences and humanities > Social Sciences > Social Sciences (General)
Social Sciences and humanities > Social Sciences > Law and Legal Studies
JGU School/Centre: Jindal Global Law School
Depositing User: Subhajit Bhattacharjee
Date Deposited: 12 Apr 2024 11:29
Last Modified: 12 Apr 2024 11:29
Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1177/14614529241230680
URI: https://pure.jgu.edu.in/id/eprint/7614


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