We get frequently asked as to what our position is about Hydraulic Fracturing (also known as fracking or frakking). Our answer is the same for all relatively new energy options: it should be subjected to a scientific assessment before going mainstream. Let’s briefly look at the three elements.
Since fracking has been reliably done for over fifty years, and produces desirable gas, it is clearly technically doable. The economics are also well established as being favorable.
So it comes down to the environmental part. Our view is that we need to be extremely cautious about polluting aquifers. The industry says that’s no problem, but we believe that there needs to be adequate regulations to assure that corners are not cut.
Unfortunately, it seems that science is out the window for some environmental groups, as they rely on wildly exaggerated scare tactics rather than rational discourse. It’s fascinating to see these people’s zeal for moratoriums, etc — yet they aren’t proposing wind moratoriums, and few of them have a peep to say about wind energy’s issues.
It’s also fascinating that the same arguments they use to aggressively support wind energy (e.g. energy independence, job growth, etc.) almost all apply to fracking – yet they never mention those facts. Consistency in a group’s position is a good indication of their real (vs stated) objectives.
Here are some articles and reports to consider about fracking:
Lower 48 State Shale Plays is a good map of what we now know about available gas
Game Changer is a very good story about both sides of the issue