Public hearings discussing hydraulic fracturing in Nova Scotia have come to an end after making stops in 10 communities across the province.

The final meeting took place in Whycocomagh on Tuesday night.

David Wheeler is president of Cape Breton University and head of an expert panel tasked with looking at the controversial method of oil and gas extraction,

Wheeler says the provincial government should conduct more studies and do more research.

"Step No. 1 is a debate and a dialogue in our province about what the report says, what it means — what it means at a community level, what it means at a provincial level," he said.

"f the province wishes to proceed with exploring the potential for this particular technology, then we think there's research to be done again at the community level looking at environmental impacts and community attitudes."

Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, involves blasting a mixture of water, sand and chemicals into a well bore to fracture the surrounding rock and release the trapped hydrocarbons, usually natural gas, coalbed methane or crude oil.

Wheeler expects to file his panel's report with the provincial government by late August.

Many people have voiced concerns about the controversial gas extraction technique and its impact on the economy.