A review of North Carolina's oil and gas industry regulations is being conducted by an outside group in keeping with a law to study potential drilling for underground natural gas deposits.
The nonprofit organization called the State Review of Oil & Natural Gas Environmental Regulations -- or STRONGER -- began its work Monday in Raleigh to examine programs against national guidelines.
A member of the public, representatives from the industry and the state, and official observers are completing the review. Recommendations are expected by early February.
The Legislature passed a law this year to study what's called "fracking," in which natural gas trapped in shale is released using water and chemicals underground.
The Department of Environment and Natural Resources held a public hearing on fracking this month in Sanford.