Letter: The bigger gas extraction picture | PostIndependent.com

Letter: The bigger gas extraction picture

A recent letter to the editor claims that a buffer zone of 2,500 feet between a drilling rig and an occupied building will have “devastating consequences for the ag community.”

The writer does not explain the why or the how of that claim. A quick google check indicates that it is typical of gas wells to fan out horizontally deep underground as much as a mile to 5 miles away. Staying 2,500 feet away should not be a problem. Given that the area of gas exploration happens over hundreds if not thousands of square miles, it begs the question why a well has to be placed so close to people’s homes and water sources.

This would be a tiny fraction of the overall yield of the gas field. This seems to be in a category of “we are not going to be told no.” The drilling companies might be afraid of having a precedent set. We could also observe that greed has no limits.

But we should also consider the larger picture. There is now more than enough gas and oil in production to take care of our U.S. domestic needs; certainly the needs of Colorado.

However, not long ago Republicans made a deal with the Democrats in Congress to allow exports of fossil fuels in a trade for extending subsidies on renewable energy. For decades we were told that becoming self-reliant in energy, rather than import from the Middle East, should be one of our most important goals. So now that technology has found this fuel, it becomes OK to get rid of it?

Of course, there are huge profits to be made for some; at the expense of our natural resources. The purpose of the Keystone pipeline is fuel exporting. I think selling off precious resources borders on treason. It is “we the people” that own those resources.

But in the even bigger picture, burning fossil fuels is why we have global warming and climate change. The experts tell us that burning even the fuel we already have access to will seal our fate of a climate disaster. Global greenhouse gas emissions have actually risen the last couple of years. The bottom line is that we are burning away our future, as well as ruining the lives of people next to the rigs, all for the profits of the Wall Street Banks and their clients. Those are profits on which the banks will now pay less tax on. 

Patrick Hunter

Carbondale


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