Fracking, or hydraulic fracturing, is a controversial method of extracting natural gas and oil from shale rock formations. While some argue that fracking can help reduce energy costs and increase energy independence, others are concerned about its potential impact on the environment and public health. In the UK, fracking has been banned since November 2019, but there are still those who argue that the ban should be lifted. In this blog post, we’ll explore why the UK should continue banning fracking.
The Environmental Impact of Fracking
One of the main concerns about fracking is its potential impact on the environment. Fracking requires large amounts of water, which can lead to water contamination and depletion. The chemicals used in the fracking process can also leak into groundwater and surface water, posing a risk to both human and animal health. In addition, fracking can cause earthquakes and other seismic activity, which can damage buildings and infrastructure.
The process (fracking)creates vast amounts of wastewater, emits greenhouse gases such as methane, releases toxic air pollutants and generates noise. Studies have shown these gas and oil operations can lead to loss of animal and plant habitats, species decline, migratory disruptions and land degradation.Yale School of Public Health
The Economic Benefits of Fracking
While there are concerns about the environmental impact of fracking, some argue that it could provide economic benefits. Proponents of fracking argue that it could reduce energy costs and increase energy independence. However, these benefits are often overstated. Fracking is an expensive process, and the price of natural gas has actually fallen in recent years due to increased production and decreased demand.
Public Opinion on Fracking
Public opinion on fracking is divided. While some people support the practice, many are concerned about its potential impact on the environment and public health. In the UK, there have been protests against fracking, with many people calling for a permanent ban on the practice. In addition, surveys have shown that a majority of the UK public is opposed to fracking.
Green Members of the European Parliament protesting against Shale Gas. Image credit: greensefa on Flickr.com
Why the Ban Should Continue
Given the potential environmental risks and lack of economic benefits, it’s clear that the ban on fracking in the UK should continue. The UK has committed to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050, and allowing fracking would only make it harder to achieve this goal. In addition, the UK has abundant renewable energy resources, such as wind and solar, that can provide clean energy without the risks associated with fracking.
Fracking is a controversial practice that has been banned in the UK since November 2019. While some argue that it could provide economic benefits, the potential environmental risks and lack of economic benefits make it clear that the ban should continue. By investing in renewable energy sources, the UK can achieve its goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050 while also protecting the environment and public health.