DEBUNK: Is Fracking Safe? The 10 Most Controversial Claims About Natural Gas Drilling

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Title: Is Fracking Safe? The 10 Most Controversial Claims About Natural Gas Drilling

Author: Seamus McGraw

Publisher: Popular Mechanics

Date: April 30, 2016

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Summary:

  • Natural gas is cleaner than oil, gasoline, and coal, and increased use of natural gas can aid in the transition to cleaner forms of energy.
  • Water consumed by fracking is a drop in the bucket compared to the water usage of other industries. (In Pennsylvania, natural gas uses 1.9 million gallons day (mgd), compared to 62 mgd for livestock, 96 mgd for mining, and 770 mgd for industry.
  • Groundwater contamination is geologically unlikely.
  • Claims of methane migration into drinking water are often overblown (several high-profile incidents were caused not by fracking, but by drinking-water wells being drilled into naturally-occurring methane pockets). The risks of water contamination can be further reduced with the use of stronger cement casings to seal fracking wells.

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