The following is a West Yolo Democratic Club resolution:
The use of shale gas (methane) to replace coal and oil as a fuel has indeed helped lower America’s carbon emissions. The problem lies in the method (fracking) that is used to extract the methane found in little pockets in shale rock all around the world. Engineers drill deeply into the shale rock and then pump in water, sand, lubricants and undisclosed chemicals that may be poisonous to keep micro-organisms from clogging up the pipes and hydrochloric acid to dissolve excess cement in the pipes.
The problems begin when these substances find their way back to the surface and damage the human environment. More than 650 products containing chemicals that can cause cancer have been used in fracking (hydraulic fracturing). And yet, astonishingly enough, America has no stringent federal laws to regulate fracking and to protect people from being harmed by the substances used to free the methane.
There are gigantic loopholes in the Safe Drinking Water Act and the Clean Water Act that allow fracking to go on all over the United States, primarily unregulated. California’s new fracking regulations are a glaring exception.
The West Yolo Democratic Club is concerned about the evidence of possible widespread, serious human harm caused by fracking: for example, numerous earthquakes in places like Kentucky; numerous accounts of water contamination causing health problems.
We believe Congress must remove the loopholes in the Safe Drinking Water Act and Toxics Release Inventory Act that allow fracking to go on unchecked. We also call for baseline studies of water and air quality before drilling begins and regular monitoring during and after fracking.
President, West Yolo Democratic Club, Winters