Energy

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Tammy Mix's sons play on the sidewalk as a drilling rig peeks above the tree line behind her Stillwater home.
Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

Oklahoma cities and counties would no longer be able to ban hydraulic fracturing - a process commonly called fracking - or other oil and gas operations within their boundaries under a bill signed into law by Gov. Mary Fallin.

Fallin on Friday signed the bill that was supported by the oil and gas industry, but fiercely opposed by municipalities and environmental groups.

Oil-field workers use sledgehammers to unstick a pipe at the George saltwater disposal well near Wakita in northwestern Oklahoma.
Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

Two burly men armed with sledgehammers take turns bashing a khaki-colored steel flange fastened to a pipe in the middle of a soggy, gravely lot near Wakita in northwestern Oklahoma.

When people call up Leigh Jerrard, founder of Greywater Corps, they're greeted with a recorded message: "Note that we are overwhelmed with inquiries right now, so it may be a while before we get back to you. But have faith."

Jerrard's company helps homeowners with the complicated process of installing their own Greywater systems. The system takes drainage from showers or washing machines and uses it to water lawns.

It sounds like a great idea now, but six years ago, when Jerrard started the company, few people were interested.

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Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Oklahoma City residents packed a public meeting about an oil company's proposal to drill near Lake Hefner, a city water supply. Residents were concerned about water and air pollution, truck traffic and noise, and earthquakes.
Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

The Oklahoma Legislature is sending a message to towns, cities and counties: Don’t try to ban fracking.

Oklahoma legislators were inspired by the November 2014 voter-approved city fracking ban enacted in Denton, Texas. And, like their counterparts in Texas, they were determined to make such action illegal.

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Gov. Mary Fallin and other state leaders observe a PowerPoint presentation of revenue projections.
Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

Today, Gov. Mary Fallin signed legislation ending a pair of tax incentives used by wind energy developers. The bills will end the use of an exemption that has ballooned alongside the state’s booming wind industry.

The governor’s signature on Senate Bills 498 and 502 means companies building wind farms after 2016 won’t be eligible for a five-year property tax exemption and another incentive written for manufacturers pumping money into property or employees. The property tax exemption was popular with wind developers, who used it to claim thirty-two million dollars in 2013.

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