Saturday, November 27, 2021

Play

Don't want the hassles of Black Friday - consider a refurbished gift this year; day after Thanksgiving travel could be messy - and supporters regroup for recreational marijuana in South Dakota.

Play

Big retailers predict an historic holiday shopping season, but small businesses are not sharing that optimism, and economists weigh in on what s behind the nation's labor shortages.

Play

South Dakota foster kids find homes with Native families; a conservative group wants oil and gas reform; rural Pennsylvania residents object to planes flying above tree tops; and poetry debuts to celebrate the land.

USGS Study Finds Large Increase in Fracking Water Use

Play

Tuesday, July 7, 2015   

DENVER – A new study from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) shows water used for hydraulic fracturing, better known as "fracking," is on the rise across the nation.

The study found water use in horizontal drilling at gas wells was 28 times higher in 2014 than in 2000, and each gas well now taps over five million gallons of water, while oil wells require some four million gallons.

Sam Schabacker, western region director with Food and Water Watch, says this is bad news for states prone to drought.

"We've seen in Colorado that we don't have enough water already," he says. "Unfortunately, the oil and gas industry continues to consume and pollute our precious natural resource."

Industry groups claim the EPA has never found an instance of hydraulic fracturing contaminating groundwater in Colorado, but they admit large-scale fracking operations may have a cumulative impact to watersheds and groundwater over time. In some areas, well operators are working to capture and clean post-fracking water for re-use.

Since fracking operations are not the same in every location, the report found water usage varies from one location to another. The report did indicate more water was in play in areas with large shale formations, like the Piceance Basin in northwest Colorado.

Schabacker says some toxic chemicals added to the water in the hydraulic fracturing process are at risk of migrating to Colorado aquifers and waterways.

"That is water that could potentially contaminate some of our pristine drinking water supplies," he says. "As well as some of our main recreational areas for fishing or kayaking."

The report's authors say they're hopeful new information about how much water is being used at different sites across the U.S. will give land and resource managers more information to protect against potential environmental impacts.


get more stories like this via email

Vicki Harder-Thorne is honoring 30 years of sweat equity her parents put into restoring 80 acres of land in Ottawa County. (Harder-Thorne)

Environment

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Succession is an inevitable process for Ohio farmers, and it can also be an opportunity to re-imagine the land. Vicki Harder-…


Environment

HELENA, Mont. -- To honor the Biden administration's steps toward greater ties with tribal nations, conservation groups are calling on it to list the …

Social Issues

PIERRE, S.D. -- Supporters of establishing recreational marijuana in South Dakota say they're pouring all their energy into a new ballot initiative…


Farming is Virginia's largest private industry, according to the state Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

RICHMOND, Va. -- In central Virginia, permanent access to land is one of the biggest barriers to farming. A new land-trust model aims to secure both …

Social Issues

BOSTON -- This holiday season, consumer advocates are urging Commonwealth residents to consider giving gifts that don't require purchasing anything…

The mission of the 'Buy Nothing Project' is to promote the giving of goods and services within hyperlocal circles. (bfleeson/Pixabay)

Social Issues

AUSTIN, Texas -- Supply chain delays have some holiday shoppers stressed that gifts won't be on store shelves on this "Black Friday," or won't arrive …

Social Issues

DETROIT -- As cold weather moves in, state agencies are working to make sure Michiganders know how to apply for the Michigan Energy Assistance …

Social Issues

NEW YORK -- A team of New York-based filmmakers is producing a documentary about reclaiming Indigenous heritage, told through the experiences of an 18…

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021