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Diluting the truth

The first [concern about fracking is that it] uses huge amounts of water that must be transported to the fracking site, at significant environmental cost.

BBC on water requirements for shale gas operations

Estimates indicate that the amount needed to operate a hydraulically fractured shale gas well for a decade may be equivalent to the amount needed to water a golf course for a month; the amount needed to run a 1,000 MW coal-fired power plant for 12 hours; and the amount lost to leaks in United Utilities’ region in north west England every hour (Moore 2012).

The Royal Society on water requirements for shale gas operations

Truck movements could be minimised where water supply can be obtained from the public water mains, or by a licensed abstraction from a nearby waterbody.

Scottish Government expert panel on water requirements for shale gas operations

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Reader Comments (22)

Bish that BBC link goes to the Scottish report rather than the BBC.

Jan 29, 2015 at 9:12 AM | Unregistered CommenterEddy

Effectively, the greens have won a victory for the left, stupidity and a common purpose one at that.

Because, there has been so much BS talked about just the initial processes of hydraulic fracturing that, unless something major happens in sequence - like a massive oil price spike, the downfall of the whole administration not only in the UK, but in Qatar and the house of al-Saud and some say Russia.........AND the end to the quangocracy. Then, nothing of substance in the UK oil and gas hydraulic fracturing industry will ever happen.

Jan 29, 2015 at 9:13 AM | Unregistered CommenterAthelstan.

I am so sick of hearing the adjective "controversial" in front of every use of the work fracking. The BBC cannot separate the word from their institutional prejudice on the subject. It is only controversial because they perpetuate the myths of dangerous earthquakes, poisoned water tables and fugitive gas.

What really concerns the big green blob is the potential for more fossil fuel production because they are genuinely concerned about "carbon" emissions. Most of the activists have been repeatedly lectured about climate change and dangerous sea level rise since they were at primary school and accept the causal link between fossil fuels and catastrophic climate change without question. If that was worrying me I would be dead set against fracking too.

Being scientifically literate and naturally inquisitive allowed me to question the likely scale of anthropogenic climate change and make up my own mind up about the threat to our environment, but for most people in the UK the BBC are the voice of authority on all environmental and scientific matters and they set the enviro-political agenda and the public's perspective.

Jan 29, 2015 at 9:18 AM | Unregistered CommenterEddieK

The BBC is virulently against all sensible fuels - coal, oil, gas, uranium, thorium. The BBC is strongly in favour of all useless fuels- moving air, sunlight, waves, tides. It is not surprising as the BBC reporters are all unscientific fully paid-up members of the green blob (Harradin etc). Are they paid by Putin to do all they can to reduce this country to a peasant society?

The BBC is nothing more than a green blob/socialist propaganda tool. It can lie with impunity, because all complaints are swept aside and it is backed by the BBC Trust, which is is also controlled by the green blob.

Jan 29, 2015 at 9:29 AM | Registered CommenterPhillip Bratby

Eddie K - you are absolutely right. The education system has acted as a propaganda machine for twenty years and the youngsters have been "radicalised", by an environmental message which they now equate to unchallenged truth/fact. Politicians court popularity and this is probably a popular decision in Scotland, the fact that it conflates with any factual search beyond that of a tweet or headline is evident by your comment. Nicola Sturgeon last week made a plea for help for the North Sea oil fields last week which indicates a change of mind if a hypocritical one, but I'm afraid too late to change anything here. I am willing to make a prediction that once fracking is shown to be perfectly safe in England the moratorium willl be brought swiftly to an end - unfortunarely that is the measure of modern soundbite politics.

Jan 29, 2015 at 9:29 AM | Unregistered Commentertrefjon

The BBC's charter is up for renewal in 2016 - time for a popular revolution against the licence.

Why are we paying £3,500M for biased drivel? Perhaps now is the time to launch a major complaint campaign to the Culture Minister!

Jan 29, 2015 at 9:32 AM | Unregistered CommenterCharmingQuark

"The first [concern about fracking is that it] uses huge amounts of water that must be transported to the fracking site, at significant environmental cost". - BBC on water requirements for shale gas operations

How come the BBC never mention the environmental cost of the transport of bio-fuels? The distillery in my town has just (at great expense partly funded by the 'Green' Bank) switched from an oil to woodchip boiler for the stills. As the energy density of kerosene is about 15 times greater than softwood, this means instead of 1 or 2 oil tankers a week coming from Grangemouth (about 75 miles) there are now about 20 lorries every week, coming from the woodchip mill in Invergordon, about 150 miles away. And the source wood for these chips has probably come from Scandinavia or the Baltic states. More Green madness and la la land economics.

Jan 29, 2015 at 9:49 AM | Registered Commenterlapogus

Spot the difference between this diagram for fracking and this diagram for geothermal, both used by the BBC.

Jan 29, 2015 at 9:54 AM | Unregistered CommenterTerryS

Controversial or Despised should be used to precede every mention on the Controversial BBC.

Jan 29, 2015 at 10:08 AM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

Did anyone see the laughable attempts to make a story out of three inches of snow here and there on the BBC news this morning?

Jan 29, 2015 at 10:15 AM | Unregistered CommenterStonyground

When did the BBC last use the adjective "controversial" in connection with wind farms which despoil the countryside and only produce energy intermittently, or to biomass power generators which also cause environmental problems?

To the PC mindset that is endemic in the BBC only things that they disapprove of are ever "controversial."

Jan 29, 2015 at 10:16 AM | Unregistered CommenterRoy

It gets even worse.
Fracking requires concentrated water whereas normal domestic water is diluted water.
Diluted water is no fracking good.

Jan 29, 2015 at 10:20 AM | Unregistered Commentertoorightmate

@ Phillip Bratby at 9:29 AM

"The BBC is virulently against all sensible fuels - coal, oil, gas, uranium, thorium."

On the contrary. It's only virulently against others using sensible fuels. For its own properties, it's happy to use fossil fuels. Ask them what fuel they use to heat Broadcasting House.

Jan 29, 2015 at 10:48 AM | Unregistered CommenterJoe Public

Just a place holder about using water. There are processes I believe that are called "gas fracking" which uses liquid propane/natural gas as the injector. It takes about 5,000 to 10,000 gallons propane mix to frack a well in West Texas - do the math. So far, with water being cheaper to buy and cheaper to recover, it's not commercially viable and will be even less so as the oil supply glut continues. Claims about it being more "eco" seem a bit off since putting even more hydro chems in the ground don't solve the anti-frackers lament of "you're breaking the granite crust and we're all gonna fall into the mantle" and, obtw, you'll pollute the ground water and, obtw, the Moon will fall out of orbit, etc.

Jan 29, 2015 at 11:45 AM | Unregistered Commentercedarhill

Wow. Big media and big green are pushing back with their lies and deception worldwide.
They seem to believe that the engineers in the UK are incapable of dealing with the challenges of fracking, unlike the engineers everywhere else in the world. Or maybe Big green and the BBC believe that if they magically repeat "alternative energy, sustainable energy" over and over that windmills and solar will suddenly start working.

Jan 29, 2015 at 11:53 AM | Unregistered Commenterhunter

oops Controversial or Despised should be used to precede every mention OF the Controversial BBC.

Jan 29, 2015 at 12:55 PM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

Strange that the BBC always shows pictures of the big drilling rig necessary to initiate a fracking site - but makes no mention of either that all that equipment goes away once the gas is flowing, or that (intermittent) wind turbines despoil the countryside for (at least) twentyfive years...

But - hey - its the BBC, innit..?

Jan 29, 2015 at 1:19 PM | Unregistered Commentersherlock1

Typical discussion I have...

But it'll disrupt the water table!

You get your water from a reservoir anyway! The water table already has too much bloody coal in it!

Jan 29, 2015 at 1:48 PM | Unregistered CommenterJamesG

The BBC Daily Politics today illustrated the almost impercetible tremor believed to have been caused by Cudrilla's test frack by shaking the camera about while the presenter pretended to lose her balance. I think she may have been joking but no attempt was made to clarify.  The studio discussion ended with a Labour politician smiling with satisfaction at the obstruction of UK shale as she intoned "and it causes earthquakes you know".

Jan 29, 2015 at 2:07 PM | Unregistered CommenterChilli

I sometimes wonder what is the real purpose of many BBC 'journalists'. Do they get paid by MI5 to travel around talking, writing and interviewing people while pretending to be officially "doing something"?

That would certainly explain why they are allowed to concurrently explore their own personal and irrelevant political and intellectual backwaters without fear of contradiction or disapproval.

Jan 29, 2015 at 2:34 PM | Unregistered Commentermichael hart

The BBC is currently pushing its investigation on how government departments respond to FOI requests.

Mirror, mirror on the wall...

Jan 29, 2015 at 10:26 PM | Unregistered CommenterIt doesn't add up...

The reality is that water will be supplied to Cuadrilla's Fylde site by pipeline, as is shown in the Borough Council's planning document:

United Utilities PLC (UU): No objection subject to the inclusion of a specific worded
condition to protect assets in Preston New Road from HGV movements.
With regards to water supply to the site, UU has advised that the principal water
demand would be during the hydraulic fracturing operations. During other times, water
would be required to support the drilling operation, site cleaning and welfare
operations. The water demand during hydraulic fracturing operations is anticipated to
be approximately 765m3 of water per day (a maximum of one hydraulic fracturing
stage will be carried out in a single day). This water would be supplied from the United
Utilities (UU) potable water network.
UU have confirmed that the 15" trunk main to the western corner of the site has the
capacity to supply the site without restrictions.

Jan 30, 2015 at 1:33 PM | Unregistered Commenterwellers

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