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Fracking totally destroys our drinking water, wherever it is allowed.
As if only beermakers are against fracking …
– German beermakers look like winning their battle to stop fracking (Guardian, June 17, 2014):
ExxonMobil test drilling makes brewers fear for their livelihoods, but others see fracking as alternative to coal and nuclear energy
“Germany is a beer nation: if their beer has no flavour, people will mount the barricades,” says Friederike Borchert. At her family’s brewery in Lünne, Lower Saxony, about 800,000 litres of beer are produced a year: a light pilsner, a dark beer and a buckwheat brew. Borchert, 27, dreams of one day making her own India pale ale, though now fears she may have to put her aspirations on hold.In spring 2011, US energy group ExxonMobil made a horizontal test drill into shale rock under a field down the road, so far the only one of its kind in Germany.Many locals are now convinced that Lünne has been earmarked as the country’s first site for fracking, the controversial method of extracting gas by injecting water, sand and chemicals into the rock at high pressure. Earlier this month, a leaked letter by the economy and energy minister, Sigmar Gabriel, hinted at permitting fracking from 2015, apparently confirming their suspicions.”For brewers fracking could spell the end of our existence,” says Borchert. Water used for brewing has to be “even cleaner drinking water”. The fear alone that chemicals used during fracking might enter the local ground water could ruin the brewery’s reputation. But then Germany is a beer nation, she says, and when brewers speak up politicians tend to listen.…
‘German Angst’??? (Angst = Fear)
‘War is Peace’ … and … ‘Sanity is now the new Angst”???
– Germany CEOs Lament Lost Innovation as Fracking Angst Rises (Bloomberg; June 10, 2014):
Germany has rejected genetically modified crops, nuclear power and magnetic levitation trains. Now, the country that invented the modern car and X-ray technology is adding fracking to the list of innovations it’s wary of.
Business leaders had lobbied for the extraction method, which injects water and chemicals underground, to lessen Germany’s dependence on Vladimir Putin’s Russia where a third of its natural gas supply is derived. Last week, the government started preparing a law to limit fracking to rare cases, unlike in the U.S. where the practice is widespread.
The restrictions are a setback for executives, who say policymakers bow too easily to concerns in the population that new technologies will harm the environment. Germany, which has the most powerful Green Party in Europe, is missing out on industries worth more than $200 billion globally, or about 6 percent of its gross domestic product, including nuclear power and fracking. Executives argue the risk-aversion hampers the competitiveness of a nation that discovered nuclear fission used to detonate atomic bombs, and has been led by a trained physicist, Angela Merkel, since 2005.
“If we habitually reject risk, then we’ll run our society into the grave,” said Karl-Ludwig Kley, the chief executive officer of the world’s oldest chemical and pharmaceutical company Merck KGaA (MRK), in a May 13 panel discussion in Frankfurt.
Germany is not alone in rejecting extensive fracking, genetically modified crops and nuclear power in the face of widespread political, scientific and popular concern over their environmental impact.
Fracking is banned in France and the U.K. government, while supportive of the practice, has faced opposition from numerous groups such as the Green Party and Greenpeace. Genetically modified crops, widely grown in Asia as well as North and South America, are also spurned by France and Austria. Italy and Greece had already rejected nuclear power before Merkel decided to shut down all German reactors by 2022 following the Fukushima plant accident in Japan three years ago.
“With fracking, there are still too many questions that haven’t been answered yet,” said Volker Bouffier, the prime minister of the federal state of Hesse, which last month backed a decision to uphold the current ban of the practice on concern that chemicals could seep into drinking water. “Every politician has to ask him or herself the question: Can I take responsibility for this?”
Still, Bayerische Motoren Werke AG (BMW) Chief Executive Officer Norbert Reithofer uses the term “German Angst” to explain the paradox of the country’s innovation ability on one hand and its reluctance to embrace technological change on the other.
“German Angst refers to how, when it comes to making radical changes, we in this country like to engage in long and fearful discussions, because we Germans tend to see more problems than opportunities,” Reithofer said.
– Germany to resume fracking by 2015 under tougher environmental norms (Mining, June 10, 2014):
As the German government fine-tune new rules to allow miners use the controversial technique of hydraulic fracturing — or fracking — for gas extraction as early as next year, experts are voicing their concerns.
After a two-year moratorium, Environment Minister Barbara Hendricks has said that the country is ready to embrace the shale gas revolution. But she warned that while allowing fracking should reduce Germany’s dependency on Russian energy and boost competitiveness with US manufacturers, authorities will set tough environmental standards.
– Germany Leans Toward Allowing Fracking (New York Times, June 5, 2014):
BERLIN — In a potential shift in German energy policy, the government of Chancellor Angela Merkel is preparing a framework that would let energy companies extract oil and natural gas by the controversial practice of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking.
The guidelines emerging from government discussions are strict, but they are a step, as energy companies have been barred from using the technology in recent years, even for conventional gas extraction.
The government is responding to pressure from industry and consumers to develop new sources of fuel and reduce Germany’s dependence on gas imported from Russia. With domestic production dwindling, almost 90 percent of Germany’s gas is imported.
Allowing fracking would open up the possibility of the production of oil and gas from shale rock in Germany.
– Special Report: How fracking helps America beat German industry (Reuters, June 2, 2014):
(Reuters) – Nestled in the green hills of southern Germany, chemical giant Wacker Chemie churns out a wide range of products, from an ingredient for chewing gum to the polysilicon crystals in solar cells.
The electricity to produce all that – enough power for more than 700,000 households annually – has become more costly at Wacker’s main factory in Burghausen. It has played a big part in pushing up the firm’s total energy bill by 70 percent over the last five years, to nearly half a billion euros.
It’s a different story across the Atlantic in the U.S. state of Louisiana. There, chemicals maker Huntsman Corp pays 22 percent less for its power than it did just seven years ago.
More info on fracking:
– Fracking’s Terrifying Water Usage Trends Spell Disaster
– Prof. Chris Busby For RT: Wrecking The Earth: Fracking Has GRAVE RADIATION Risks Few Talk About
– Texas: The Worst Drought In Two Generations Is Choking Water Supply, Which Is Why Residents Now Turn Against Fracking