While I agree with the members of the Stokes County Board of Commissioners and Rep. Holloway on a wide range of issues related to economic freedom through low taxes, low government spending, and eliminating crippling government regulations, I believe that these individuals have made a misguided decision and have not thoroughly investigated fracking.
So what is fracking? Fracking is the shortened name of hydraulic fracturing and is a process of fracturing the shale rock layer in the ground so that the natural gas in the rock will come up once the well is in place. But instead of me telling you the process, here’s a video of exactly what happens.
The next charge against fracking that I found in the Winston Salem Journal and The Stokes News from citizens concerns the chemicals that are used during the process. Here’s a breakdown of what is used when fracturing the shale rock to get to the natural gas:
So where’s the other 0.5% coming from? Sodium chloride (found in table salt), ethylene glycol (used in household cleaners), borate salts (some of you are wearing that right now because it’s used in cosmetics), sodium/potassium carbonate (used in laundry detergent), guar gum (sounds scary, right? It’s used in ice cream), and finally isopropanol (used in deodorant). None of these chemicals will harm you, but once again, the steel tubing on the well is impermeable, so nothing is going to seep into your groundwater.
So what would cause citizens to be so concerned?
Well the fear of fracking comes from a documentary titled Gasland. In this film, the director shows how one family in a fracking town in Colorado has the ability to ignite their water in their kitchen sink.
If fracking does take place in North Carolina, it will most likely affect the areas of Lee, Harnett, and Chatham Counties. Stokes County would be much further down the road assuming it will even happen at all.
The legislation is Senate Bill 820 and was passed in both chambers of the General Assembly. There’s obviously been a lot of confusion as to what the bill would actually do.
Here’s what the bill will: it will begin building a regulatory process for fracking. This process will take at least a couple of years to complete in order to put the right environment in place for fracking to even begin. It will create a commission to study the process of fracking and to setup environmental and safety protections. And for fracking to even begin, the demand will have to dramatically rise for natural gas, and when it does, it will happen in Lee County first.
So with all this said, why should fracking take place in North Carolina? For one, it produces natural gas, which is cleaner than oil or gasoline, and it emits half as much carbon dioxide, less than one-third the nitrogen oxides, and 1 percent as much sulfur oxides as coal combustion.
It costs 1/3 less to fill up a car with natural gas than traditional gasoline.
The United States is abundant in natural gas. Just to put it into perspective, according to a professor of geosciences at Penn State, there’s more natural gas lying underneath West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and New York than Saudi Arabia’s entire energy reserves. If that’s not energy independence, I don’t know what is.
Here’s the best part, fracking will generate a tremendous boom to our economy. Just look at North Dakota, a state which now relies heavily on the natural gas industry. North Dakota has a 2% unemployment rate.
And it’s not just good for energy sector jobs. Because there are so little houses in North Dakota and because of their influx in population, there aren’t enough houses for the people, so many of them are living in their cars in Walmart parking lots or in camps while houses are being constructed. Think of all the construction jobs that are being created and think of how much real estate companies are being able to profit from North Dakota.
Truck drivers are making six figure salaries in North Dakota because they’re in such high demand. McDonald’s employees are making $15 an hour because it’s one of only a few restaurant chains in the state and the company is having a hard time finding staff.
In Ohio, fracking has contributed $4.9 billion to the state’s economy.
North Dakota has created hundreds of thousands of jobs just in the energy sector alone in the past five years.
This can happen in North Carolina, but instead we have elected officials that make comments like this one in the Winston-Salem Journal that “big oil comes and digs in Stokes County and takes what they can get, then pulls the drills out and says adios.” This is a scare tactic and is a play out of the Obama handbook of creating fear over “big oil.” Do any of you know what sector of the economy creates the most revenue for the federal government? BIG OIL!
And while we’re on the topic of big oil, why isn’t big environment ever mentioned? I don’t want big environment telling big oil that they can’t bring jobs to North Carolina and then have big oil leave and create jobs in another state like North Dakota.
Al Gore is set to become the first carbon billionaire because of the money he has profited from investing in green energy while scaring everyone into the theory of climate change.
Look at the Obama administration’s relationship with Solyndra. Solyndra, the green energy maker, contributed millions to the Obama campaign only to then receive a half a billion in tax money. The company then went bankrupt, but the Obama administration funneled more money into Solyndra so that the company wouldn’t fire employees before the 2010 Election. 1,100 employees didn’t realize that they would be fired once the election was over.
Now is fracking the best solution to put America on the road to energy independence. No. But it is a solution and it is a good solution.
We need to be energy independent to create jobs and to keep more money at home instead of funding countries that don’t like us and don’t share our ideals. If someone on the left argues with you over energy policy in the United States (like fracking or the Keystone Pipeline), ask them these questions – Do you hate gays? Do you think women should be able to drive a car? Do you think women should have the right to vote?
Of course you know their answer, so then ask them – Then why do you insist on sending our money to Middle Eastern countries that kill gay people and where women have absolutely no rights to speak of. Ask them these questions. Make them think. If they said they do hate gays and think women shouldn't vote or drive, ask them what the frack is their problem, only use another word besides frack.
Energy from Shale
Energy in Depth
USA Today - Unemployed? Go to North Dakota
Charleston Daily Mail - Fracking boom for Ohio real estate