Water Is Something About Which We Should Not Be Dumb
There’s a water shortage in Texas. This is because of a number of factors, including urban sprawl, simple wastage, the ongoing drought, and the Great Climate Change Hoax, which is affecting us all and might be a concern, if it actually existed, which half of our political system believes it does not. There is also another reason. The energy companies are using the water for fracking, which seems uniquely stupid in a time of urban sprawl, wastage, drought, and the Great Climate Change Hoax. Most of the places being affected are small communities, like Barnhart, which the energy companies simply look at as vassal states to be used up and discarded.
The people of Barnhart, a tiny West Texas community near San Angelo, are certainly paying attention. Thanks to fracking’s outsized water demands, the town well has gone dry. The town’s water crisis brings to mind another old saw: “The prospect of being hanged focuses the mind wonderfully.” In Barnhart, where a severe and lingering drought already had put a strain on the water supply, minds are focused these days, though not so wonderfully. A recent story in the Guardian noted that ranchers have had to dump their herds, farmers have lost their crops and residents are being forced to live with water rationing. In addition, the area aquifer is being strained. Still, the oil industry continues to demand water, and those with water on their land are still willing to sell it.Every month, oil and gas companies dispose of 290 million barrels of wastewater from fracking. That’s the equivalent of 18,500 Olympic-sized swimming pools, Luke Metzger of Environment Texas points out. That’s water that can never be used again - in a drought-debilitated state, no less. At least partial solutions are possible, including mandatory recycling, saline or brackish water use and waterless fracking, but Texas lawmakers, for the most part, have allowed the industry to have its way.