Governor Quinn signed Senate Bill 1715 (P.A. 98-0022) to regulate the fracking industry in Illinois.  The legislation, which is estimated to generate as much as 47,000 jobs, was co-sponsored by State Representative Dwight Kay (R-Glen Carbon).

“Southern Illinois needs jobs, that is why it was so important to pass this landmark legislation,” said Rep. Dwight Kay.  “With fracking expected to bring as much as $9 billion dollars to Illinois’ economy, we can expect many good paying jobs to follow.”

Fracking is the process of extracting natural gas and petroleum from shale rock layers deep within the earth.  Water mixed with sand and chemicals is pumped through a well into rock that holds a carbon fuel, such as oil or natural gas. The water creates pressure, which fractures the rock or opens up pre-existing cracks. The sand holds the cracks open so the gas and/or oil can be extracted.  Fracking has taken place in Illinois for decades, but has remained largely unregulated.

“Ensuring a safe environment was of the utmost importance when this legislation was assembled,” said Rep. Dwight Kay.  “It is fair to say that Illinois will have the most regulated fracking in the country while still allowing the industry to expand.”

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