Kaitlyn B. Illinois

Fracking in the united states

Fracking needs to be managed and controlled to prevent the threats to our environment and lives that can occur.

Dear future President,

My name is Kaitlyn Brannigan. I am a seventh grade student concerned about the environment. Especially, hydraulic fracturing also called fracking which poses a health issue for U.S. citizens.

Fracking is a way of retrieving natural gas. A hole is drilled several hundred feet into the ground then a horizontal tunnel is dug into the layer of rock holding the gas. Fracking fluid is pumped into the ground causing cracks in the ground. The fracking fluid is pumped out and the natural gas is recovered. Workers will then dump more fracking fluid in the ground and seal it off to sit. This is when water contamination can occur.

According to Water and Waste International, the process of fracking is not only wasting up to 100,000 gallons (378 m3/day) of water, it can also contaminate the water supplies we rely on for fresh water. The contamination is so serious even a treatment plant can not remove the harmful substances in the water.

Another concern are fracking blowouts. Shuffle Stuff says "A blowout is the uncontrolled release of oil or gas from a well.". Blowouts spray a toxic mix of chemicals causing death of vegetation and the need for evacuation of citizens. A blowout causing the evacuation of over 20 families and a dead zone of over a 1/4 of a mile occurred in Texas (see image below). There are devices referred to as blowout preventers that can be put in place to prevent these blowouts from happening.

The fracking fluid is also a threat to the health of natural gas workers. They are exposed to high amounts of benzene also known as carcinogen. This can lead to anemia, excessive bleeding, and can harm your immune system. Fracking can also affect the wildlife of the area. If exposed it can lead to low birth weights, slow bone formation, and bone marrow damage.

The United States has used fracking over a million times. Some sources of drinking water have already been contaminated due to negligence. This contamination can be managed. We need your support to make sure fracking does not affect the environment we live in today or the environment of future generations. Please limit the future fracking until adequate safety measures can be put in place.


Kaitlyn Brannigan