questions about OUR water.
What happens when it's gone? Or contaminated?
Check out the letter in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram on water conservation.
Use rain barrels: check. Put in drip irrigation system: check. Turn off water while washing hands and brushing teeth: check. While every little bit helps, how much water is saved with these individual efforts?
Meanwhile, we sign leases and approve governmental policies allowing hydraulic fracturing to recover natural gas. A typical drilling site will use 50,000 to 4 million gallons of water; a larger site uses as much as 13 million gallons. The Texas Water Development Board estimates that the total water used statewide for fracking in 2010 was 13.5 billion gallons. Only 20 to 25 percent of this water is recovered, and it is contaminated with chemicals.
When companies ask why I will not sign a mineral rights lease, I respond that it is their waste of the scarce, essential, natural resource of water that concerns me. Some tell me they respect me. Some tell me they admire me. Not one has told me I am wrong.
Yes, individuals need to conserve water, but the degree of conservation Texas needs will come only when industry also makes conservation of water a priority -- even if that means new city and state regulations.
Agua es vida. Water is life.
-- Risa Payne, Fort Worth
Durango wanted to know how much water is used on fracing gas wells in the BS. Chesapeake representatives have said 3-5 million gallons per well (which can be fraced multiple times). Seems those numbers might be off. Check out the number on Earthblog. And remember that doesn't count unmetered sources. Think that doesn't happen? Take a drive around town, check out the wells along the creeks and river, it won't take you long.
We don’t know exactly how much water they use because most of the estimates come from industry. We do have the little dab of information from the Upper Trinity Groundwater Conservation District that revealed industry used 1,146,598,272.73 gallons of groundwater in 2009. But that only considers the metered sources. There were many cases where industry took water from unmetered sources with no enforcement action or fines.
Another estimate on frack water usage comes from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Mywesttexas.com recently reported in their article, Gas fracturing trades one scarce resource for another, that EPA “estimates water use for fracking nationwide was 70 billion to 140 billion gallons in 2010.”
What happens when it's all gone?
That's all, folks!