Harvesting Natural Gases
September 16, 2012
Harvesting Natural Gases I. Introduction
A. Although natural gas is the next step to our clean energy initiative, the lack of regulations on fracking is leading to air and water pollution, droughts and undisclosed chemicals which are used in the process.
II. What is the Fracking?
A. Fracking is a process to harvest Natural Gases from the earth core.
1. There are two different processes of fracking, Hydraulic and horizontal fracking.
2. Chemicals are released into wells to harvest the gas.
B. The current regulations for fracking are left to each state to determine how
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For each frack there could be up to eighty to three hundred tons of chemicals used, and each well can be fracked up to eighteen times. (Fox, 2011) There is another type of fracking called horizontal fracking. Unlike the hydraulic fracking, the horizontal fracking is used when the already dug well has been depleted of the gases. Horizontal fracking is used to extend the life of the well by “tapping shale deposits containing natural gas”.(Fox, 2011) In addition to the chemicals used in the beginning process, there is also a new set of chemicals used in this process, which then the water is consider contaminated and cannot be used again and disposed. The current regulations for fracking are left to each state to determine what is best for their state. The USA EPA (2012) website states, “EPA is working with states and other key stakeholders to help ensure that natural gas extraction does not come at the expense of public health and the environment.” How is this possible; in 2005 there was an Energy Bill that was passes taking the EPA out of the process of drilling for natural gases. This is now known as the Halliburton Loophole. This loophole allows the companies to ‘protect’ product used in the fracking process, and are not even able to be touched by the EPA. Thus, leaving it up the individual states to mandate and regulate their own fracking sites. Congress exempted fracking due to the key portions of federal environmental laws. This leaves