Fracking is a “death sentence for humanity,” analysts say after study finds natural gas companies emit 5 times more methane pollution than they report.
A new study by the Environmental Defense Fund finds that methane escaping from fracking operations in Pennsylvania causes the same climate pollution as 11 coal-fired power plants.
The emissions are “at least five times higher” than what is reported to the state.
A previous assessment by EDF last November found methane emissions escaping from oil and gas wells in New Mexico are “equivalent to the climate impact of approximately 12 coal-fired power plants.”
Methane is a powerful greenhouse gas which traps 86 times as much heat as carbon dioxide, according to Think Progress.
The number of fracking wells in the United States doubled between 2000 and 2010. The amount of methane in the earth’s atmosphere increased dramatically over the same period.
A recent NASA review determined this was no coincidence.
“Fracking is a loaded gun pointed straight at the head of every man, woman, and child alive,” writes the clean technology analyst Steve Hanley for CleanTechnica.
“Not only does it put as many pollutants into the air as coal fired generating plants, it impedes the progress of renewable energy sources under the guise of being a ‘bridge fuel to the future.’”
“To be clear, a world that relies on fracking has no future.”