PITTSBURGH (NewsRadio 1020 KDKA) — Lawmakers and natural gas industry representatives are meeting Monday in Charleston, W. Va., to discuss the future of drilling in the Marcellus shale region.

The U.S. Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, which includes U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-W. Va.), called for the meeting to discuss the impact of hydraulic fracturing of gas wells, or “fracking,” on the natural environment.

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Environmentalists and critics of the drilling industry argue that fracking, which blasts water, sand, and chemicals into the ground at high pressure, threatens drinking water supplies.  Industry representatives contest this claim.

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Paul Rasmussen and Rose Ryan-Douglas talk with CBS correspondent Jim Krasula, who is covering the meeting, on the KDKA Afternoon News.  Krasula tells them what the meeting means for the future of the still-young Marcellus boom.

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