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The Truth About Water Use

Last year, Illinois watched as a bill designed to regulate the safe and responsible development of New Albany Shale (SB3280) was turned into a proposed moratorium on hydraulic fracturing. Unfortunately, that wasn’t enough for those committed to blocking energy development in our state: On February 6, 2013, yet another bill was put before our General Assembly (SB1418) calling for a two year ban to review, evaluate, and make recommendations regarding the regulation of hydraulic fracturing operations in Illinois.

These bills are simply smoke and mirror illusions that undermine the concerted efforts of legislators to develop meaningful regulation, which would provide our state with the possibility of tens of thousands of new jobs and represent an enormous amount of new investment in Illinois. They mask the real objective of these groups – to ban development entirely in Illinois and rob our state of the numerous benefits that other states around the country are already experiencing.

What these groups consistently fail to acknowledge is the fact that the safety of hydraulic fracturing has been repeatedly confirmed by state and federal regulators, choosing instead to repeat false talking points in an attempt to obscure the truth.

One of these oft-repeated claims is that hydraulic fracturing would exacerbate or even create drought-like conditions. Looking at the facts, such a claim is demonstrably false.

On the high end of estimates, a report from the U.S. Department of Energy estimated the water required for hydraulic fracturing in any given region to be roughly 0.8 percent of total demand. That’s certainly not a drought-inducing drain on Illinois’ water supply. Data from states with long histories of oil and gas development also prove that hydraulic fracturing does not create a realistic threat of water shortages.

Need more proof? Check out EID’s latest fact sheet, which can be viewed below or by clicking here.

Hydraulic Fracturing and Water Use by Energy In Depth


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