David Spence, “Fracking pits state vs. locals,” (Houston Chronicle)

In a May 5 opinion piece, professor David Spence argues that “there are now indisputable rumblings caused by [hydraulic fracturing] in local communities across Texas.” Community protest is increasing, in Spence’s words, “as local residents find themselves at odds with both natural gas developers and state laws, policies, and economic interests.” “Authorizing local governments to tax mineral interests or share in state royalty or tax revenues is one form of compensation. Direct compensation from producers to local communities is another,” Spence recommends. He concludes that “[w]ithout local participation in the financial benefits of fracking, local anti-fracking rumblings may build and continue to spread.”