An advisory panel to the Department of Energy stopped short of putting forth stricter regulations for the use of hydraulic fracturing to drill for natural gas, but recommended stricter oversight of the practice, known as “fracking.”

The panel report, commissioned by President Barack Obama, said stricter rules on regulations as well as disclosures by companies are required to assuage public concern over the environmental and health impact of hydraulic fracturing.

The seven-member panel recommended stricter pollution standards and the setting up of a database to monitor drilling operations. “The public deserves assurance that the full economic, environmental and energy security benefits of shale gas development will be realized without sacrificing public health, environmental protection and safety,” the Natural Gas Subcommittee said in its report.

The expert panel also said companies should eliminate diesel fuel from their fracking fluid as it is found to include carcinogenic chemicals, The New York Times reported. The report also calls for companies and regulators to disclose the full list of ingredients used in hydraulic fracturing.

A Democratic Committee on Energy and Commerce had said in April this year that fracking could pose a number of environmental and health hazards. The report said hydraulic fracking could cause the contamination of ground water, risks to air quality and the migration of gases and hydraulic fracturing chemicals to the surface.

One of the chief concerns about the process is that fracturing fluid used far below the earth's surface can significantly pollute fresh water zones. According to a United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) study in 2010, drinking water contaminants like arsenic, copper, vanadium and adamantanes were present near drilling sites were hydraulic fracking was used.

However, according to a Wall Street Journal report last year, the EPA administrator had said there were no "proven cases where the fracking process itself has affected water."

Fracking is also associated with other environmental concerns, including its potential to impact rock shelves and cause seismic events.

A study by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology found this year that the environmental impacts of shale development are challenging but manageable. "There has been concern that these fractures can also penetrate shallow freshwater zones and contaminate them with fracturing fluid, but there is no evidence that this is occurring," the study said.

According to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, fracturing fluids typically contain about 90 percent water, about nine percent propping agents like silica sand and less than 0.5 percent chemicals.

The report also said the federal government should fund the development of more efficient and clean drilling techniques, NYT reported.