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A strong view against fracking

February 20, 2013

It’s telling that a group of fourth graders unanimously reached the conclusion that we shouldn’t be fracking. Ah, the innocence of youth; they’ve not yet mastered the art of defending the indefensible.

First, you need a good industry-funded PR machine to indoctrinate the public: in these parts, Energy in Depth (EID), but others are all over the fracking frontier. Assemble all sorts of cherry picked “evidence” and ignore inconvenient facts. (See below). Divide and conquer. Character assassination is essential. You’ve got a good start but a heck of a long road ahead of you. We’re not all Hollywood liberals, Park Foundation grant recipients, or deluded homeowners with nothing better to do than whine about “supposedly polluted water.” (Come on, really?). That some people actually believe this is sad. For a list of 825 other “attention seekers,” go to www.pennsylvaniaallianceforcleanwaterandair.wordpress.com/the-list/. This list would undoubtedly be a lot longer if it included those who felt they were adequately compensated for their troubles (or not, but had to sign a gag order for recompense) or are just too disgusted by their own naivety to talk about it. Whatever the real number, it’s a far cry from zero as still claimed by some.

If concrete and steel last forever why is our infrastructure crumbling? According to industry statistics, six percent of well casings fail right away, up to 50% within 30 years (www.pulitzercenter.org/reporting/pennsylvania-shale-gas-hydraulic-fractu...).

More problematic than what goes into the frack is what comes out. Our shale is teaming with microbial life and only the Lord knows (certainly scientists don’t), the consequences of destroying their environment or introducing them into ours. Better keep the biocides, in my opinion. The Marcellus Shale also contains particularly high levels of radioactive materials, which current wastewater treatments cannot remove. Yes, radioactive.