Global warming believers vs. naysayers. Lamborghini vs. Ferrari. Barcelona vs. Real Madrid. These are just some of the things that have the public and the experts divided in their opinions. Recently, fracking joined the list.
Fracking is the name given to a relatively new set of techniques and technologies that have changed the way people are drilling for oil and natural gas. Of course, this method has its own advantages. For starters, it has reduced the dependence on the oil wells in the Middle East. A number of countries headed by the USA are known to use fracking to reduce their oil imports which, in turn, have reduced the costs of fuel. Yay time?
Not quite. Engineers, climate change experts, geologists and a whole host of other professionals are calling for a ban on fracking. They have documented the existence of a number of problems in this method.
Source: Jeremy Buckingham
For starters, this method has led to serious concerns about the quality of air and water in the nearby areas. During the drilling process, a number of chemicals are released into the atmosphere that includes carcinogenic gases like methane and benzene. More dangerous is the possibility of water contamination.
During fracking, massive amounts of water are pumped into the ground with chemicals and sand in order to fracture the shale layer. This releases the oil or gas which is then pumped out. In horizontal fracturing, gallons of water can be required. During the fracturing process, underground water reservoirs can be affected. That means gallons of water can get contaminated by the chemicals making them undrinkable including underground water reservoirs. What the frack? Another problem is that fracking requires a lot of water.
Of course, fracking also undermines the natural geology of the region. The changes can turn out to be rather risky leading to earthquakes. Damn.