Tuesday, 30 August 2011 08:00

Fracking to Release Shale Gas

In my previous article “Natural Gas as an Environment-friendly Solution?” I wrote about how useful natural gas actually is. “The use of compressed natural gas, also known as CNG, “produces no unburnt carbon soot, no sulphur, no brown cloud. Just carbon dioxide and water (food for trees).” Yeah, it sounds really nice. In addition, I talked about the great amount of natural gas in the United States, which can be used. Actually, 14% of the American natural gas supply is made up of shale gas. This amount could increase up to 45% by 2035, if the fracking process will be introduced. This would mean totally new energy and power wells instead of crude oil.

However, fracking, also known as hydraulic fracturing, isn't that environmental-friendly, as we may think. Digging into the ground to gain gas may be easier, than digging after oil, but the transport of this gas may be as expensive as refining crude. But there are already some reports and researches about fracking, which don't really show it in a good light. According to a Duke University study, the groundwater in Pennsylvania and New York, two states where fracking has been introduced, has been contaminated with methane. A research of the US Energy Department says, there can be even other problems with this process, for instance, even air pollution isn't excluded. But there are a lot of other states, where hydraulic fracturing is used, like Texas and Colorado. The state New Jersey, however, has passed a ban against fracking, that awaits signature by the republican Government.

Let us think about this like average people. Like those, who will live next to these plants. As we see, water and groundwater is the most endangered element by fracking. We all know, that water is more important for life, as any other shale gas, oil or anything else. Fracking is still in beta status. There are more researches and tests needed, to use these methods properly, without the fear of further, possible disasters.

"Unfortunately", the Central Intelligence Agency chief seems to like the idea of this new method: “When you realize we may have several thousand such wells drilled in the US over the next 20 years, it’s important to get this right.”

Let's hope they won't hurry too much.

Source: csmonitor.com

Share on Myspace