Sunday, October 02, 2011

Does Shale Gas Development Contaminate Fresh Water?

Some groups are concerned about development of the vast shale gas resources in North America.  I believe that the fear of contaminating fresh water aquifers through production of the shale gas is unfounded. That said, it is certainly up to each concerned person to seek the truth. Let the facts speak for themselves. To the best of my knowledge no cross contamination has ever occurred, but I don't know everything.
We need to remember that risk is a part of life. If our parents & grandparents had never taken a risk we wouldn't have any of the things that have improved our standard of living to a point undreamt of only a few short years ago, things we take for granted. There is risk associated with the mining of coal, production of electricity, and oil & gas; but where would we be without them? Is the risk of developing shale gas resources greater than the risk of relying on foreign energy supplies? Would we rather suffer the pain of giving up our conventional energy supplies or take the risk of developing them?
To answer these questions we must understand the risk, and that's where these issues usually stall. Fanatics & alarmists jump up & down & shout slogans & don the noble mantle of "protecting the environment", but that is not helpful. A clear headed objective review of the facts is necessary to establish the true risk. What might happen? What would be the consequences if it did? That is what is called for in this issue. I believe that the risk of cross contamination is very low, but let the facts speak for themselves.
If you want to know more, read Kids Before Trees  and check back here for frequent updates.

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