Arthur E. Underwood IV
Hydraulic Fracturing and Why It’s a Concern Today
Professor Joseph Smith
Laws 310-The Legal Environment
Table of Contents
Page 3: Introduction, Process of Hydraulic Fracturing
Page 4: Continuing Explanation of Hydraulic Fracturing, France and Hydraulic Fracturing Page 5: Executive Orders, Fracking Jobs
Page 6: Fracking Jobs and Fracking Taxes
Page 7: Transportation Costs of Fracking on a Community
Page 8: Environmental Issues
Page 9: Closure
Hydraulic Fracturing and Why It’s a Concern Today.
Hydraulic fracturing, commonly referred to as fracking, has been a hot topic of debate in the United States of America since its inception in 1947 and first well drill in 1949. The United States was the first country to perform hydraulic fracturing to tap into a previously unavailable resource, natural gases deep underground in very small micro veins that spider web across a large area. The concerns are, and have included, most importantly health concerns and tax revenues. Controversy and a big difference between the local citizens and the oil companies has brought this topic to a heated debate. Citizens become increasingly concerned about health issues and damaged environments. Therefore discussing these subjects is becoming increasingly difficult. Hydraulic Fracturing is a process in which an oil company will drill into the earths crust to the layer of earth where extremely small veins of natural gases and oil are trapped. These layers of gases are typically unavailable, as they are not naturally bound together in a well like the larger oil reserves are found in the Middle East and in the ocean. Instead of merely drilling down to a depth and pumping up crude oil and venting natural gases they must use technology to open the veins and crevices and seep these gases and hydrocarbon slowly to a well.
Instead, the oil companies mix water with sand and sometimes chemicals like acids, and inject the water into the ground at a high pressure., usually about 5,000 pounds per square inch. This sends out a ripple puncture in the stone up to 1,000 feet long and will temporarily open the small crevices of oil and gas hydrocarbons. The sand and or chemicals are used to help keep the crevices from closing and loosing access once again to the gases. The gases then seep naturally to the well, and through the use of horizontal drilling, the wells can run along the shale underground horizontally gaining a larger area access per drill at the surface, where they can be pumped to the surface. Hydraulic Fracturing is now the main means in which we gather shale gas. According to businessinsider.com, Shale gas was discovered in the 1990’s and entrepreneurs started using Hydraulic Fracturing as a chief means to access these gases. Shale gas is left behind in mud from previous oceans and lakes. The mud eventually turns into sandstone, coal, The Hydraulic Fracturing business is not a popular one. Indeed several countries have banned the process. Most notably France has recently banned Hydraulic Fracturing all together, in an article by business insider; the vote was 287-146 for banning. The United Kingdoms recently banned the process pending a formal investigation. The United Kingdom then released the ban choosing to impose regulations and controls that oversee and guarantee the safe and healthy uncovering of hydrocarbons, instead of banning the process altogether. While most of the world is following this process, countries such as France want nothing to do with the possible down sides the process could produce on the local environment and water supplies of the local towns people. This might also be due to the fact the permits that where previously handed out for drilling in France where only a few miles outside of Paris. It was then the people of Paris cried out to the legislature to stop this. In the United States, President Barrack Obama recently issued an Executive Order regarding the...
Cited: Badkar, M. (2011, May 12). France to Ban Fracking. Business Insider, p. 1. Retrieved from http://www.businessinsider.com/france-bans-fracking-2011-5
Foshner, M., Lemus, K., & Havens, K. (2012). The Economics of Hydraulic Fracturing. Retrieved from http://http://frackfreesprings.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/Economic-Impacts-of-Fracking_PDF-1.pdf
Kelsey, T. W., Sheilds, M., Radley, J. R., & Ward, M. (2011). Economic Impacts of Marcellus Shale in Pennsylvania: Employment and Income in 2009. Retrieved from Marcellus Shale Education & Training Center &Pennsylvania College of Technology and Penn State Extension website: http://http://www.shaletec.org/docs/EconomicImpactFINALAugust28.pdf
Obama, B. (2012). Executive Order -- Supporting Safe and Responsible Development of Unconventional Domestic Natural Gas Resources | The White House. Retrieved from White House Office of the Press Secretary website: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2012/04/13/executive-order-supporting-safe-and-responsible-development-unconvention
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