Misinformation is being spread about water use and hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) in California – including in the pages of The Bee – and I would like to share some facts.
Fracking in California uses a relatively small amount of water. In fact, all of the state’s fracking annually accounts for 0.00062% of the state’s annual freshwater withdrawals. Other uses, including residential lawns, golf courses and even the swimming pools in Los Angeles, use significantly more water and we don’t hear calls to ban such things.
Activists are trying to capitalize on California’s drought to push for a misguided ban on fracking. This would result in greater reliance on foreign fuels (meaning higher CO2 emissions), higher energy costs, the loss of thousands of high-quality jobs, and reduced local and state tax revenues. Not only that, but last year Kern County energy producers provided more than 10 billion gallons of treated produced water (31,658 acre-feet) to agriculture to help farmers hurt by the drought.
California has the most stringent environmental protections in the country, and we should be proud of our more than 100-year history of a robust energy industry and environmental leadership going hand-in-hand.
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Dave Quast, California director of Energy in Depth, Glendale