Thursday, 8 March 2012

Monday 28th November 11

A good day topped off by a really interesting film at City Screen called Gasland. This was a shocking portrayal of how a relatively new way of extracting gas has impacted on a large number of mainly rural American communities.

The extraction method is colloquially known as 'fracking' (hydraulic fracturing) and involves drilling into gas-bearing rocks and then breaking up the areas around the bore hole with explosives or high pressure water, and pumping in a mixture of liquids, and somehow this causes the gas to come out.  The liquids pumped in contain several toxic chemicals, and these have turned up in peoples' drinking water where their supplies come from wells and bore holes.  Most shockingly, some of the methane released by this method also gets into the drinking water, so that it can be ignited, and jets of flame come out of the taps, see, for instance, this video from the film.

Unfortunately, fracking is beginning to be explored here in the UK and I really don't think we should be doing this.  The fossil hydrocarbons should stay trapped exactly where they are and have been for millions of years. The exploratory fracking has also caused a mini-earthquake and the drilling rig occupied by protesters.   There are several campaigns to try to stop fracking, such as No Fracking UK, The Campaign against Climate Change,  and Greenpeace

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