Log in

No account? Create an account

Previous Entry | Next Entry

Random political observation

Listening to a discussion on the radio just now on the debate over hydrofracking in NYS. My own opinion leans toward no, but I rarely, if ever, hear people take any note of two things:

1. The appeal of fracking in NY's Southern Tier is because we are economically hurting, to put it extremely mildly. Some meaningful assistance with economic development here would reduce the appeal of the jobs seemingly created by fracking. (I've heard both arguments.)

2. Those who say "just stop using fossil fuels" usually pay no notice to rural areas like this. We have only a limited ability to avoid the automobile. One size fits all does not work on this issue, but too many commentators appear to think it does.


( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
Aug. 23rd, 2013 02:26 am (UTC)
The idea that fracking is even being debated around here is mind-blowing. First, it requires huge amounts of water. Second, a lot of the water that's injected into the ground stays there, but because of the fracking process, it's a chemical soup. Third, why doesn't anybody mention that the process (in my unscientific opinion) releases radon that's trapped underground along with the shale gas? Fourth, how will the water/chemical soup/radon mix that comes back to the surface be stored, and treated, how, where, by whom, at what cost?

Another thing: The glut of shale gas produced by fracking will drive up the supply and drive down the demand, so Big Energy is going to simply walk away from fracking operations, leaving us with an environmental mess because we're pretty much politically impotent on the state and federal levels.

Your point # 2 is on point, as you well know. If you have to see a doctor in Buffalo, it's not simply a matter of stepping down to the station and catching Amtrak. We're in the middle of nowhere, and there's no way to get to even the edge of nowhere without driving.

Aug. 23rd, 2013 04:17 am (UTC)
What you say in the first graph explains the reasons I lean toward a no. And I agree with you that our likelihood of getting stuck with the bill is pretty high.

But I think I can explain why it's still under debate here. People see what appears to be economic bonanza in some of the areas where fracking happens -- and then they look around an area which waves good-bye to too many people just because we don't have enough even moderately-well-paying jobs for them. (A pair of neighbors are about to move -- solely because one of them found a far better job outside this area.) Your comment about our political impotence explains why no one seems to notice -- for example, until recently, I wasn't even sure the governor realized NYS extended to any area south of the Erie County border.

That doesn't say I think fracking is the solution. But I understand why some people think it's the magic wand we could wave.

And point #2 is a longstanding aggravation. And I am incredibly tired of seeing that discussion continue to happen without the perspective of those of us in the rural areas.
Aug. 24th, 2013 03:30 am (UTC)
There you go, being all rational again. Don't you know arguments of this magnitude can be settled by examining only the extreme edges?

Edited at 2013-08-24 03:31 am (UTC)
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )



Latest Month

July 2016
"Laughter, like love, has power to survive the worst things life has to offer. And to do it with style."
-- Jim Butcher, from "Blood Rites"
Powered by LiveJournal.com
Designed by Tiffany Chow