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Md. Official: Natural Gas 'Fracking' Should Be Reviewed

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Miners call it "fracking". It involves injecting pressurized, chemically treated water into the ground to loosen deposits of shale, releasing trapped natural gas.

Advocates say fracking is safe; opponents argue the practice contaminates water supplies. As it turns out, Western Maryland sits atop one of the U.S.'s richest natural gas fields, and there are two pending applications from companies that want to drill for gas there.

Robert Summers, Maryland's acting environment secretary, told a Senate committee Tuesday that he wants more federal oversight on fracking. He won’t green-light the drilling until he’s satisfied it can be can be done safely," he added.

"…It can disturb some of the naturally occurring materials, such as methane, within those various layers and it has caused problems in some areas," Summers said during his testimony.

The Maryland General Assembly, which adjourned this week, failed to pass a proposed two-year, industry-financed analysis of hydraulic fracturing. Meanwhile, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is studying the effects of the process.

WAMU 88.5

The Music And Legacy Of Motown

Motown founder Berry Gordy and director Charles Randolph-Wright of “Motown the Musical" join Diane for a conversation about the history of Detroit's famous sound.

WAMU 88.5

Will Montgomery County Go "Bottoms Up" On Liquor Laws?

Since Prohibition, Montgomery County has held the purse strings on liquor sales, meaning the county sells every drink from beer to bourbon to local bars and restaurants. But local business owners are pushing back from this system, claiming it lacks efficiency and leaves customers waiting. County officials say they are holding out for alternatives that protect those within the industry. We discuss both sides of the issue today.

WAMU 88.5

Exelon's Chief Strategy Officer On Its Proposed Takeover Of Pepco

Kojo chats with Exelon's chief strategy officer about the company's vision for electric service in the Washington region, and its argument for why its acquisition of Pepco is in the best interest of customers.

WAMU 88.5

Computer Guys And Gal

Another year is coming to a close and the Computer Guys And Gal are here to discuss this year's biggest technology news, including the growth of virtual reality and the "Internet of Things."

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