Fracking Threatens America’s Air, Water and Climate
About 25 percent of fracking chemicals could cause cancer, scientists say. Others harm the skin or reproductive system. Evidence is mounting throughout the country that these chemicals — as well as methane released by fracking — are making their way into aquifers and drinking water.
Fracking can release dangerous petroleum hydrocarbons, including benzene and xylene. It also increases ground-level ozone levels, raising people’s risk of asthma and other respiratory illnesses.
Wildlife is also in danger. Fish die when fracking fluid contaminates streams and rivers. Birds are poisoned by chemicals in wastewater ponds. And the intense industrial development accompanying fracking pushes imperiled animals out of wild areas they need to survive. In California, for example, more than 100 endangered and threatened species live in the counties where fracking is set to expand.
DISRUPTING OUR CLIMATE
Fracking releases large amounts of methane, a dangerously potent greenhouse gas. Fracked shale gas wells, for example, may have methane leakage rates as high as 7.9 percent, which would make such natural gas worse for the climate than coal. But fracking also threatens our climate in another way.
To prevent catastrophic climate change, we must leave about 80 percent of proven fossil fuel reserves in the ground. Fracking takes us in the opposite direction, opening up vast new deposits of fossil fuels.
If the fracking boom continues, oil and gas companies will light the fuse on a carbon bomb that will shatter efforts to avert climate chaos.
BAN FRACKING NOW
To protect our environment from fracking, we must prohibit this inherently dangerous technique. That’s why the Center supports fracking bans and moratoriums at the local, state and national levels.
|Fracking photo courtesy Flickr Commons/Justin Woolford||HOME / DONATE NOW / SIGN UP FOR E-NETWORK / CONTACT US / PHOTO USE /|