California Releases Rules for Fracking

Association of Construction & Development
November 20, 2013 — 1,854 views  

Fracking, also known as hydraulic fracturing, involves pumping sand, water and various chemicals into the ground. This method of drilling allows people to release the trapped hydrocarbons in the Earth’s crust. The method is extremely controversial because of the environmental hazards that it brings with it.

Arguments for Fracking

While there are numerous supporters who argue that the process is good for the economy, environmentalists are strongly against it. Those for it state that the process creates a number of employment opportunities. They also say that the release of these hydrocarbons will provide people with a rich source of energy, which could help address the constant shortage of power the world faces.

As of now, renewable sources of energy are still quite expensive and processes relating to them need to be refined and more cost-effective. This will then help solve many immediate crises. However, environmentalists maintain that though employment generation is a bonus of fracking, it has a number of potential side-effects that could be rather disastrous for people in the locality

Arguments Against the Process

The first major concern is that hydraulic pumping could contaminate the ground water supply in the region. In case of such an event, thousands of people would suffer and would require immediate assistance. The next problem relates to the environmental pollution and degradation that the process overlooks. Destroying resources around it to release hydrocarbons has various dangerous long-term effects. Though the threat may not seem imminent at the moment, they are a cause for concern.

Each gas well needs about 400 tankers to carry supplies and water to the site. This in itself has a massive negative implication because it creates that much more carbon emission in the environment, not to mention blocked roads and incessant noise pollution. Also, anywhere between one to eight million gallons of water are needed for the successful completion of a single fracturing job. If the water supply is affected, this is an additional amount of water that is contaminated, and a number of people will suffer from health hazards.

Stringent Rules to Take Effect Early the Following Year

State officials say that the regulations that have been issued on Friday are extremely tough to bypass. Proper testing of groundwater and notification of neighbors are standard practices that have to be done. The regulations will be made stringent so as to maintain the peace between those for it and those against. The law will take effect at the beginning of 2015.

Association of Construction & Development