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Ocasio-Cortez introduces national fracking ban

Ocasio-Cortez introduces national fracking ban
© Greg Nash

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezOVERNIGHT ENERGY: EPA may violate courts with new rule extending life of unlined coal ash ponds | Trump reverses course, approving assistance for California wildfires | Climate change, national security among topics for final Trump-Biden debate Biden distances himself from Green New Deal during town hall Ocasio-Cortez, progressives call on Senate not to confirm lobbyists or executives to future administration posts MORE (D-N.Y.), along with Rep. Darren SotoDarren Michael SotoRadiation elevated at fracking sites, researchers find Hopes for DC, Puerto Rico statehood rise Florida Democrat introduces bill to recognize Puerto Rico statehood referendum MORE (D-Fla.) officially introduced a national fracking ban in the House.

The bill, announced at the end of last month, serves as a companion bill to the Senate legislation proposed by Sens. Bernie SandersBernie SandersThe Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by Goldman Sachs - Tipping point week for Trump, Biden, Congress, voters Biden and Schumer face battles with left if Democrats win big Push to expand Supreme Court faces Democratic buzzsaw MORE (I-Vt.) and Jeff MerkleyJeffrey (Jeff) Alan Merkley Senate Democrats call for ramped up Capitol coronavirus testing The Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by The Air Line Pilots Association - Trump, Biden renew push for Latino support Sunday shows - Trump team defends coronavirus response MORE (D-Ore.), one that Ocasio-Cortez helped draft. Both bills would ban fracking across the nation by 2025. 

The laws would also prohibit fracking within 2,500 feet of homes and schools by February 2021. They also would provide a transition for working families in the fracking industry.

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“Fracking is destroying our land and our water,” Ocasio-Cortez posted on Twitter. “It is wreaking havoc on our communities' health. We must do our job to protect our future from the harms caused by the fracking industry. That is why I am proud to introduce the Fracking Ban Act with @RepDarrenSoto today.”

Soto said in a statement that fracking poses a hazard to “our health, safety and environment.”

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“If we want to transition from fossil fuel emissions as we work towards building a 100 percent clean economy, pulling back from fracking is a critical first step,” he said. “Failure to act will only make the crisis at hand even more detrimental for future generations of Americans.” 

Sanders has vowed during his presidential campaign to eliminate fracking in the country if he wins in 2020.

American Petroleum Institute spokeswoman Bethany Aronhalt told The Hill in a statement last month that a ban could produce an increase in household energy costs.

“Banning a safe, successful method of developing energy would erase a generation of American energy progress and in the process destroy millions of U.S. jobs, spike household energy costs and hurt farmers and manufacturers," she said after the Senate bill was first announced.