The Marcellus Shale Safe Drilling Initiative Advisory Commission held an initial vote last week. The Cumberland Times-News reports the panel decided:
• A minimum amount should be established for a performance bond that would be required of drillers attempting to extract natural gas by what is known as fracking.
• Drilling companies that have sufficient assets and financial stability should be allowed to self-insure.
• There should be a mechanism to verify that funds will be available to address environmental cleanups that are not covered by comprehensive liability insurance.
• The Maryland Department of the Environment should be allowed to periodically adjust required bond amounts based upon changing costs of reclamation.