Of course, innovation is one thing. Whether it's good for society is quite another. And, like nuclear energy and genetic engineering, fracking draws critics, fearful of the drilling effects on drinking water, and the carbon emissions implications.That is very interesting. The whole article is worth reading. Their big breakthrough was finding that water was the best fracking fluid base. That is potentially the most damaging breakthrough, also. Water, it's scarcity, and the pollution thereof will be, along with climate change, one of fracking's biggest potential limitations.
"That's going to prolong our dependence on the fossil fuel industry," Emily Wurth at Food and Water Watch. "Which is in their best interest, at a time when we need to be aggressively moving away from using fossil fuels."
Mitchell's view on that is a bit of a twist. He supports fossil fuel taxes, which could phase out his discovery. And his foundation has given millions to research clean energy.
And Mitchell wants stiff regulation of drillers, especially small, independent players.
"I've had too much experience running independents," Mitchell says. "They're wild people. You just can't control them. And if it doesn't do it right, penalize the oil and gas people. Get tough with them."
The words of a Texas oilman, talking out of school. It's not the first time George Mitchell has turned an idea upside down. And now, his breakthrough has turned America's fossil fuel debate on its head -- from one of scarcity to one of abundance.
Saturday, December 8, 2012
The Father of Fracking On Drilling Regulations