A report on the cost of shale gas mining has identified a need for Australia-wide regulation of the controversial 'fracking' practice.

The Australian Council of Learned Academies recently released a report on the economic viability of shale gas mining in Australia.

The study looked at gas reserves, extraction costs, environmental impacts and regulatory systems.

Co-author Professor Peter Cook says the report found it would be best to establish a national approach to regulation.

"Shale gas resources sometimes are very extensive and go over state boundaries and so on so you can't just restrict some of these things to a single state," he said.

"That will mean that we've got to take a broader view and we felt there was a need to take a broader view of the regulations in general."

Professor Cook says it would not be effective to regulate well by well.

"You sometimes have to draw hundreds of wells to extract the resources in a cost effective way and obviously this has an overall accumulative effect," he said.

"This can be regulated but you've got to be conscious of it, you've got to develop a strategic way of dealing with this rather than looking at individual wells."