Letter of the Day: Explaining fracking

  • In this March 25, 2014 photo, perforating tools, used to create fractures in the rock, are lowered into one of six wells during a roughly two-week hydraulic fracturing operation at an Encana Corp. well pad near Mead, Colo. Proponents of hydraulic fracturing point to the economic benefits from vast amounts of formerly inaccessible hydrocarbons that now can be extracted with hydraulic fracturing. Opponents point to potential environmental impacts, with some critics acknowledging that some fracking operations are far cleaner than others. (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley)

<b>Explaining fracking</b>

EDITOR: The global warmers would like everyone to believe that a frack job takes crystal clear water from the Sierras, uses it to blast gaping holes underground and then fills them with toxic chemicals that pollute groundwater.

In actuality, when a well is drilled, potable water aquifers are isolated with steel pipe and cement to prevent potential contamination before drilling continues to the oil reservoir hundreds to thousands of feet deeper. A frack job injects water, produced from other oil wells, at high pressure, to create fractures, thinner than a dime and within a few feet of the well bore. This allows oil trapped in spaces between sand grains to flow to the well.

Small sand grains are added to keep the fractures propped open. Sometimes acid, such as swimming pool acid, is added to dissolve carbonate rock. This produces water, carbon dioxide and salt.

Stopping fracking will not reduce the amount of oil used in this country, nor will it increase renewable energy resources. So, instead we should produce our own oil to create jobs, improve the economy and our trade balance, provide tax revenues, improve national security and do so under better environmental control than in other nations.



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