Comments on: The cost of attacking Syria, and tell me what to think about fracking Steven Brill Tue, 19 Aug 2014 18:30:28 +0000 hourly 1 By: CharleneKing Wed, 11 Sep 2013 19:59:17 +0000 In Eastern Ohio, we have been seeing the beginnings of an income and tax bonanza from fracked fuels. However, according to a LiveScience report based on the July issue of the journal Geological Research, the Northstar injection well had to be shut down a year after it started — because “in the year that followed, seismometers in and around Youngstown recorded 109 earthquakes, the strongest registering a magnitude-3.9 earthquake on Dec. 31, 2011.”

To add insult to injury, those of us in the region affected by the threat to ground water are now informed that the big new Nexus Pipeline to carry Utica Shale gas from Ohio to Ontario, Canada, is to provide gas FOR EXPORT ONLY. Apparently fuel prices are down in the U.S., so the export market is now being sought. And they are running this huge pipeline through our populated areas. All this does not sound like a good economic trade-off for the United States?

By: OneOfTheSheep Wed, 11 Sep 2013 04:02:49 +0000 “…what can be authoritatively said about the likelihood and scale of fracking accidents or other dangers, and how do these threats weigh against the benefits?” It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to understand that with new technologies come new risks that must be confronted and competently evaluated and managed.

As but one example, do humans fly? Not naturally. So when we travel in airplanes by the missions do some fall out of the sky and do people die? Definitely. But the “reality check” is that a hundred years after the first tentative trips aloft an individual is infinitely safer traveling just about anywhere in a scheduled airliner than driving to and from the airport at each end of the trip.

As America entered the 20th Century, oil wells were near the surface and access relatively easy. Today they go very seep into strata not accessible before and in some locations under the sea. Do accidents happen? Of course. But industry learns, and learns well over time.

The truth is that western civilization is utterly dependent on such energy. The fuels and other products that such energy makes possible through the refining process are the very cornerstone of comforts of modern life our grandparents could not have dreamed of. Opponants of the Keystone pipeline suggest it will forever pollute all surface and subsurface water from Canada to Texas. Please.

They obviously are ignorant of the fact that older, less safe technology was employed to move incredible amounts of oil and refined product all around the U.S. during WW II (and since) with unparalleled safety and efficiency. Such pipelines contributed materially to the ultimate Allied victory. Spills and explosions happen, but are relatively few and damage is both minor and temporary. Associated benefits to our economy and way of life are everywhere, constant and lasting.

Many of these old pipelines are still in safe, productive use today. I know because my grandfather (I’m 73) and father helped build and maintain those systems. It was hard, uncomfortable work, but someone had to do it.

So if fracking can lessen this country’s day-to-day dependence on countries that hate us and our way of life, I believe a little risk here and there to be quite acceptable. Most of the objectors offer the same old tired NIMBY (not in my back yard) arguments. Please. The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.