Saturday, April 28, 2012

Protecting Ground Water from Fracking, Minimum Distance Recommended

Artificial fissures in the earth’s crust caused by hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, typically extend less than 600 meters, according to a new Durham University study.

“Minimum vertical separation distances for fracturing operations would help prevent unintentional penetration of shallow rock strata.”

The new study, published in Marine and Petroleum Geology, shows the odds of so-called ‘rogue fractures’ reaching more than 600 meters from the injection source of a fracking operation is less than one percent. The probability of fractures achieving greater than 350 meters in length was found to be one percent.

“Such a distance should be set by regulators; our study shows that for new exploration areas where there is no existing data, it should be significantly in excess of 0.6 km.”

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