The Role of the Oil and Gas Expert Witness In Fracking

August 11, 2018 | Author: | Posted in Politics

Fracking is a controversial subject, and since it has become common knowledge in 2015, it has caused very many debates in governments throughout the world, and kept a number of oil and gas expert witness services busy. Fracking is a term which is short of hydraulic fracturing, which is a way to extract oil or gas from the earth. Wells are drilled into the earth, and a fluid is pumped into this well. The fluids composition is water, varying chemicals, and sand – and is intended to fracture the rocks below the surface and force out oil and gas which is part of these rocks.

Interestingly for oil and gas companies, (and certainly where the interest in this method comes from) fracking is a method which can squeeze oil and gas from resources which have been deemed commercially unviable via well logging approaches. In the UK in particular, the oil and the gas reservoirs have been consumed, and what little oil and gas that remains cannot be excavated due to the fact that what is there is worth far less than what it would cost to remove it.

Fracking has proved a solution to obtaining this, but to say it has been a controversial approach is an understatement. There is a very real concern that the act of Fracking is something which damages the structure of the surface rock, creates sinkholes, and poisons local water supplies.

This has never been confirmed, but it has never not been confirmed due to the fact that the Obama administration’s rules on fracking were extremely lax. This enabled the initial report on Fracking to not even mention the effect the process has on drinking water – but to state that “no evidence that Fracking systemically contaminates water”.

Further doubt has been cast onto the validity of this report as the years have gone on, with the American EPA no longer supporting the conclusion the initial report made, instead conceding that “the oil and gas extraction technique has contaminated drinking water in some cases.”

While being rather vague, this report has confirmed that, at the very least, the possibility of drinking water being contaminated by fracking is there. However, the issue of fracking has been made even blurrier by the fact that the Trump Administration has openly expressed its support of fracking, even appointing pro-fracking experts to the EPA.

As America has embraced fracking, other areas of the world have followed suit. The UK in particular has embraced fracking, and brought attention to itself after proceeding with fracking in an area in South Yorkshire, even after the local government had voted against it. Fracking is a highly controversial issue – much less very new and very experimental, and one which will demand the attention of an oil and gas expert witness for some time to come.

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