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  • Shale gas
    Shale gas

Shale gas and ecology


Shale gas is a valuable resource. This is an opportunity for energy independence and prosperity. But environmentalists are protesting.


There are no topics that do not polarize people in terms of induced responses. Similarly, in the case of gas trapped in shale opinions are varied. At the opposite pole to optimists believing in the fact that these resources are a guarantee of a better tomorrow, are critics pointing threats. The topic is raised about the burden that the exploitation of shale imposes on the environment.


  To understand what is going on in this discussion, you need at least to know approximately how the shale gas is extracted. This is done by the Americans with slit technique. First, a vertical borehole is executed, then horizontal, diverging from the main “shaft”. In resulting system of tunnels water mixed with chemicals is pumped, creating fissures in the rocks through which gas stored in them is being released.


Environmentalists as a threat mainly indicate mentioned chemicals added to water. There are opinions according to which in the areas where the shales are exploited, drinking water is contaminated and causes a terrible disease. However, experts on the other hand explained that this is impossible. Drinking water resources are located at depths of several hundred meters, wells are located much deeper, even a kilometer deep. So there is no possibility that the contaminated water will go out because is on the lower level. Moreover, the scary-sounding word “chemical” means a set of chemical agents, most of which we use every day - being even in the diet, such as thickeners.


Looking at the arguments coming from both sides, it must not be forgotten that here and there in the background there is a lot of money. Proponents have a support from companies interested in exploiting gas and the opponents are provided with arguments, by those for whom appearance of large quantities of cheap gas on the market is not favorable, this is the countries which are currently the leading exporters of the fuel.


Possession of oil or shale gas for many countries is a true gift from fate. It gives hopes for energy independence - thanks to oil derived from shale, Estonia has already decoupled from Russia. Other countries have a chance to go in its traces. An example would be the leader of slate revolution, the United States. Even in 2007, price of 1000 cubic meters of gas in the stock market was $ 400. Thanks to slates , price quickly dropped to $ 150, and the U.S. not only stopped buying gas from the outside, but it becomes increasingly big exporter.


Although the United States builds an example, not all share the enthusiasm. Germany and France have banned its use, the socialist-green coalition in Sweden also announced that if they win, the country will give up the slate, Russia, in turn, recently, suddenly changed its mind - the enemy becomes a friend of the revolution (which is puzzling, given the fact that it is the power of conventional sources).