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Wednesday, January 7, 2015

The Revolution That Wasn’t: Why the Fracking Phenomenon Will Leave Us High and Dry

"The result of (The Post Carbon Institute's) analysis of the production potential of the top twelve shale gas and tight oil plays in the U.S—Drilling Deeper: A Reality Check on the US Government’s Forecasts for a Lasting Shale Boom—was just released. What did (they) find? That the so-called “shale revolution” has more in common with the California Gold Rush and the Dot-Com Bubble than a new golden age of energy abundance. The implications of this are profound. If the “shale revolution” is nothing more than a temporary respite from the inevitable decline in US oil and gas production, then why are we rushing to rewrite our domestic and foreign policy as if we’re going to be “Saudi America” for the rest of the century?

And it raises painful questions about whether all of this—the tens (potentially hundreds) of thousands of wells drilled across the landscape; the billons of tons of fresh water used and contaminated; the millions of truck trips and damaged infrastructure; the NOx pollution and methane emissions; the flaring wells in North Dakota that can be seen as brightly at night as Minneapolis from space; the social impacts of booms and busts on communities across the country; the hundreds of billions of dollars invested in fracking rather than renewables; etc.—is worth it.

It’s not too late to choose a different path, but first we have to recognize that the yellow brick road we’ve been walking isn’t what it’s fracked up to be."

http://shalebubble.org/drilling-deeper/ and www.postcarbon.org

http://www.commondreams.org/views/2014/10/28/revolution-wasnt-why-fracking-phenomenon-will-leave-us-high-and-dry