Fracking: Drinking Water and New York

FRACKING Purpose: To persuade the audience to help stop the hydraulic fracturing that is happening in New York and other states throughout the country. Thesis: Today I will discuss a very important issue that is happening in our own backyard. Hydraulic Fracturing, also known as “Fracking”, is contaminating our drinking water, all in the name of “Energy Reform”. How would you feel if you were able to set water on fire? Well some people in New York and Pennsylvania are literally able to set their faucet water on fire. Fracking is a system utilized to extract natural gases from the earth.

Today I will discuss the process, dangers and loopholes in regulation of this industry. First, we must understand how hydraulic fracking works. As I mentioned, it is a means of extracting natural gas in deep natural gas wells. Once a well is drilled, millions of gallons of water, sand and proprietary chemicals are injected, under high pressure into the well. The pressure acts as mini earthquakes to fracture the ground allowing the gas to flow more freely. These wells being drilled are in locations that were previously inaccessible to conventional drilling.

Meaning, they are being drilled below our reservoirs and potable water systems. Horizontal fracking uses a mixture of 596 chemicals, many of them proprietary, and millions of gallons of water per frack. The instances of water contamination discussed in The News articles on hydro-fracturing are not unique to New York and Northern Pennsylvania. Similar stories can be found in Wyoming, Texas, Colorado and other states where this dangerous technique has been used. The chemicals used in hydro-fracturing have been linked to cancer, kidney failure, toxicity of the spleen and fertility problems.

The long-term negative environmental and human health effects of fracking far outweigh the short-term profits. The only winners here are multinational gas corporations. The Green Party of New York and all of its candidates for statewide office this year have called for a permanent ban on hydro-fracturing. We should instead be focusing on clean renewable sources of energy to free us from our fossil fuel addiction. In 2005, Bush/Cheney Energy Bill exempted natural gas drilling from the Safe Drinking Water Act. It exempts companies from disclosing the chemicals used during hydraulic fracturing.

Essentially, it eliminated the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for oversight and regulation. New York State has no direct taxation on the production of gas, which means that the state would receive absolutely no direct revenue from the extraction of natural gas via hydraulic fracturing. Consequently, the state would lose out on valuable revenue they could use to regulate hydraulic fracturing including but not limited to inspections, necessary cleanups and rebuilding of roads, wastewater disposal and recycling. To sum it up, if Congress does not vote to end fracking in New York State we are all subject to this contaminated water.

The fracking companies are literally knocking on doors and asking homeowners along with people in the community to lease their property to install these wells and pump these chemicals into the ground so I have a partition layed out in the back so that You can help and join the fight by signing petitions to ensure NYS Congress fights to stop fracking on our turf also To see the validity of this contaminated water, I urge you to check out the movie “Gasland” as well as YouTube videos of running water from kitchen sinks being lit on fire. REFERENCES . Fox, Josh. Interview with Ira Flatow. New Film Investigates ‘Fracking’ For Natural Gas. Science Friday. WAMU Washington, DC. June 18, 2010. 2. Howard, G. C. and C. R. Fast (editors), Hydraulic Fracturing, Monograph Vol. 2 of the Henry L. Doherty Series, Society of Petroleum Engineers New York, 1970 3. CHAPTER 5 NATURAL GAS DEVELOPMENT ACTIVITIES AND HIGH? VOLUME HYDRAULIC FRACTURING. 4. Tronche, John Laurent. “U. S. Representatives Unveil FRAC Act to close ‘Halliburton Loophole. ‘” Fort Worth Business Press. June 9, 2009. www. fwbusiness. com.