Fracking or Farms?

Editorial.2

 

 

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By Naomi Fisher

At this time, drought is more important than fracking. The excessive amounts of water used on fracking should be going to farms. Farms can use recycled water. Farms need the precious water Fracking is consuming.

As the drought continues, water restrictions will probably get worse. Because of dry farms, food shortages are going to worsen and food prices escalate. We will be forced to buy produce from other countries and watch our own farmers lose their farms. That is not right. We need to buy USA made to keep our economy healthy, also to keep ourselves healthy. Let’s be honest: Our government has no control over what is used on crops outside the U.S.

Internet site – Source watch: …amount of water needed to drill and fracture a horizontal shale gas well generally ranges from about 2 million to 10 million gallons. One well.

Source Watch, Variation in water usage, the 1012 Pacific Institute report: “Hydraulic Fracturing and Water Resources Separating the Frack from the Fiction” concluded that the U.S. EPA has likely underestimated the water needs of hydraulic fracturing in its estimate of 2.3 million to 3.8 million gallons per well, as there is a large amount of variability in the water withdrawals. The report cites…that while less than 5 million gallons is needed in the Woodford Shale in TX, the water consumption rises to 13 million gallons in the state’s Eagle Ford formation…difficult to estimate the lifetime requirements of the well given the uncertainty over how many times the well will be fracked…the effect can be large at the local level because the frack water cannot be reused and returned to the water cycle…it represents a consumptive use that can alter flows underground.

Economics 21: …Los Angeles just became the largest U.S. city to vote to ban fracking…L.A. Councilmember Mike Bonin said that fracking “uses excessive amount of water in a drought. Some lawmakers are even pushing for a statewide ban.”

Source Watch, Water Use: A 2011 EPA report stated that 70 to 140 billion gallons of water was used to fracture 35,000 wells in the U.S. each year, which equals an annual consumption of 40 to 60 cities with a population of 50,000. That’s burying the numbers pretty deep since the Census of 2013 showed Thousand Oaks had a population of 128,731, Camarillo 66,086, Ventura 108,817. Not being good at math I’m wondering how much water fracking is taking away from just these three cities? Also, TV News reported Orange County already has cities receiving reclaimed sewage water for drinking and daily use.

I have been unable to verify if the fracking companies have water restrictions. Since they are now legally a person instead of a company/corporation, they should be levied stricter restrictions because of their massive water usage.

We must insist that Governor Brown stop, or severely restrict, fracking and give that water to our farms. Otherwise, we, The People need to start yelling discrimination, and bigotry. If you agree, write or email Governor Brown and all our State Legislators. We have to make them listen.

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Naomi Fisher is a resident of Ventura County

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