I’m doing a Friday post instead of my usual Sunday post for an important reason: midnight tonight marks the close of public comments on whether the public lands of the United States should be opened for commercial hydraulic fracturing (fracking).
I think they should not, and my reasons are below, in the comment I submitted to the Bureau of Land Management earlier today. You can submit a comment here. It can take two minutes or less. Feel free to use any part of the below. Or, you could write a single sentence like: Please do not allow hydraulic fracturing on public lands.
Preservation of our public lands and groundwater are what make us rich as a nation. Allowing hydraulic fracturing (fracking) on them would be a great mistake. I urge you not to allow it, for these reasons.
1.) Fracking has had devastating impacts to the environment, in particular the Northeast United States, where significant groundwater contamination has been documented. History has steadily shown that resource extraction makes entire land areas resemble war zones. Even when done with relative care, extraction creates soil erosion, pollutes waterways, and destroys habitat for insects, aquatic life, birds, mammals, etc. Allowing fracking on publicly owned lands would be bad stewardship on the part of the BLM.
2.) Fracking would escalate climate change. The largest scientific consensus that the world has ever known has made clear that climate change is happening, is dangerous to civilization, and is caused by burning fossil fuels. We must keep fossil fuels in the ground, rather than extracting and burning them. Fracking the fossil fuels buried underneath public lands would trigger the burning of enormous amounts of fossil fuels, and cause our climate to destabilize much more rapidly than it is already doing.
Thank you for this opportunity to comment. I hope your decision will put you on the right side of history and future generations.
You can submit your own comment here. Participate in our democracy, let your voice be heard, and speak up against climate change. Deadline is midnight tonight.