Through the efforts of KEF and our partners, we thwarted the attempts to deceive property owners into leasing their property to out of state corporations. We were also able to assist those who did sign such leases to void them.
Hydraulic fracturing, referred to as “fracking,” is an oil and gas well development process that typically involves injecting water, sand, and chemicals under high pressure into a bedrock formation via the well. This process is intended to create new fractures in the rock as well as increase the size, extent, and connectivity of existing fractures. Hydraulic fracturing is a well-stimulation technique used commonly in low-permeability rocks like tight sandstone, shale, and some coal beds to increase oil and/or gas flow to a well from petroleum-bearing rock formations. A similar technique is used to create improved permeability in underground geothermal reservoirs.
KEF assisted in curtailing fracking leases from being signed in the Red Lick Area of Madison County through collaboration, education, legal research and community outreach. Via KEF’s efforts several signed leases were voided due to recommendations made.
What is happening?
Recently, oil and gas industries have begun speculating a potential reserve of oil and gas in Kentucky’s Rogersville Shale. The Rogersville Shale lies beneath vast swaths of Central and Eastern Kentucky and parts of West Virginia. The shale play is raising alarm for residents concerned by hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking”: the method industries will likely use to extract natural gas from the Rogersville Shale.
The Kentucky Environmental Foundation has joined Frackfree Foothills, Kentucky Heartwood, Kentuckians for the Commonwealth and many other non-profits in opposition of hydro-fracking in Kentucky. Recently, our joint efforts have resulted in the passage of an anti-fracking resolution in the city of Berea.
Why is this important?
Poorly regulated hydraulic fracking operations have become hazardous to communities across the globe. Fracking has been known to contaminate water with dangerous chemicals and gases that leak from pipes or surface water runoff. The process necessitates millions of gallons of water laced with dangerous chemicals to frack a single well, and requires places to dispose of contaminated water during and after operations.
Fracking also emits dangerous levels of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, creating thick blankets of smog around operations. For example, a recent study shows that oil and gas development in the Uinta Basin is responsible for smog-forming emissions (volatile organic compounds) that are equivalent to the amount coming out of the tailpipe of 100 million cars and trucks. Water contamination and air pollution are only two of many reasons why there is growing concern surrounding unconventional oil and gas development.
Health consequences associated with the process have led France and Bulgaria, countries with the largest shale-gas reserves in Europe, to ban fracking. The state of New York recently did the same.
KEF is working hard to stop hydro-fracking in Kentucky, we will keep updating this webpage as the situation unfolds.