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Energy Policy Position Paper: Fracking - Assignment Example

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Energy Policy Position Paper: Fracking Name Institution Abstract The whole world has been increasingly researching for ways to reduce environmental as well as atmospheric pollution. The efforts are attributed to negative experiences ranging from health problems to global warming…
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Energy Policy Position Paper: Fracking
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Download file to see previous pages However, there still persist challenges encountered in the fracking process used in the extraction of the otherwise green source of energy. This paper will define fracking and entire practices involved. The paper will also discuss the challenges and a benefit accruing from fracking of natural gases as is the case in Canadian. In the paper, I will include my view of the situation and clarification of whether to continue with the process, and under what provisions. Energy Policy Position Paper: Fracking 1) Fracking process and Geographical Areas a) As defined by Encana.com (2012), fracking or hydraulic fracturing is a process of extraction of natural gases from the underground reservoirs by way of running large volumes of fresh water underground. This water is usually pumped at very high pressure capable of distressing the otherwise hard shale rock. To ensure effectiveness of the process, miners mix the high pressure fresh water with toxic chemicals and sand to corrode and fracture the hard shale rock to let the natural gas flow out freely (Capp.com, 2012). Pressure and type of chemicals required varies from place to place depending on the geological nature of the environment. According to Karpus (2012), chemicals mostly used in fracking process in Canada include: acetone, benzene, ammonia, chlorine, formaldehyde, kerosene, and hydrochloric acid among others. The underground reactions and disturbances caused by fracking results to the outflow water mixed with methane gas, arsenic metals, bromide, cadmium, lead, nickel, mercury, radium, and cyanide among other toxic metals and gases. b) Regions in Canada where there is widespread fracking of natural gas includes Quebec, British Columbia, Alberta, Queen Charlotte Island, Vancouver Island, Elk Valley, Merritt, Manitoba, Princeton, Telkwa and Iskut (Nelson, 2010). 2) Evaluation of Benefits and Concerns a) Preference fracking as the appropriate method of extraction of natural gases in Canada attributes to its relatively lower cost that significantly cuts down on the cost of production borne by the respective mining companies. As mentioned by Graham (2012), the lower cost of production borne by the producing companies leads to automatic fall in the prices of the natural gas consumed in the households. Great efficiency of fracking has led to stabilization of the Canadian economy as the adequate and constant supply cuts the spending on the importation of oil and gas. The companies engaged in the exploitation of natural gases through fracking process offers significant employment opportunities to Canadians the stable economy. b) The entire fracking process works more to pollute the environment than the use of natural gas deemed to reduce atmospheric pollution. To begin with, the extraction process involving the need to crack the hard shale rock consumes many gallons of water estimated at 19 million liters per single well. Canadian.org (2012) indicates that this large volume of water needed for fracking comes from groundwater, aquifers or surface waters like rivers. Pumping of this large volume of water from the sources disrupts the natural water balance in the natural environment. Water imbalance in the natural environment and particularly in the aquifers can lead to bad chemical reactions on the underground minerals and even growth of dangerous bacteria. The chemical reactions of certain underground minerals can result to very toxic compounds that may be harmful to human health when consumed in drinking water ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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