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Anti-Fracking Greens and Their War on the Poor

Hydraulic fracking makes natural gas less expensive and lowers heating costs benefiting the poor.

by
Jeff Durstewitz

Bio

December 19, 2011 - 12:00 am
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And a more direct economic “stimulus” could hardly be found. Lower energy costs not only potentially fuel consumer spending but reduce the overall cost of doing business. That in turn promotes risk-taking in the form of investment and startups.

Given that the windfall from fracking benefits the poor most of all and that the process, despite long and widespread use, has been shown to present very little environmental risk (despite recent EPA grumbling about a special case in Wyoming, Director Sheila Jackson testified before Congress in May that fracking presented no special dangers), why are the so-called “greens” so intent on trying to stifle it? If there are valid concerns about using large quantities of water in some areas, can’t affected states write reasonable regulations to specify what’s acceptable in terms of use and re-use? If there are fears about the proprietary chemical additives that a given driller might deploy in a given situation, shouldn’t it be possible to deal with most potential problems by laying out best practices and banning certain agents as warranted? Regulations might well add expense and delay, but then again the quantities of gas (and oil) being made available through fracking are so vast that a somewhat higher expense ratio certainly shouldn’t be a deal killer.

Is it really necessary to ban the entire process so our green friends can feel good about themselves once again? Do they even care that they’re acting out their obstructive obsessions on the backs of the poor?

Meanwhile, the gas-bill savings at our house aren’t quite so high as those estimated for the average American household by IHS. Then again, we are keeping the house a bit warmer these days.

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Jeff Durstewitz is the co-author, with Ruth Williams, of the Bantam memoir "Younger Than That Now — A Shared Passage From the Sixties." He lives in Saratoga Springs, NY.
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