Oil and agriculture tense over fracking in California

By: Jack Tarpey

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Hydraulic fracturing in California was recently written up in the New York Times, focusing on the ties between the oil industry and agriculture. The article discusses recent oil well developments on the Monterey Shale, which stretches 1,750 square miles between San Francisco and Los Angeles. The area above this shale formation also happens to be some of the most fertile farming land in California. The situation arising out west is one that we cannot let happen in our home of North Carolina.

The recent push to take advantage of shale reserves in the farming areas of California are concerning. Fracking’s side effects could be detrimental to the environment, as chemicals involved in the process are pumped deep into the ground. The risk of contaminating not only the soil but also the groundwater is real. Both of these are crucial to farmers, and need to be kept in the best possible condition in order to sustain the agriculture industry.

Photo Credit: The Pilot

North Carolina needs to take every precaution avoid potential contamination. Despite efforts to set regulations on the chemicals involved in the process, the legislature continues to be influenced by the oil industry. There is still no clear solution on how to handle the waste that occurs from fracking, and it’s effect on farmers, and the population as a whole, cannot be ignored.