Rick Perry stands up for natural gas drilling

Texas Governor Rick Perry has wavered on some topics while on the national stage, but he hasn’t changed his stance on natural gas drilling or hydraulic fracturing.

During one of Perry’s campaign stops in Iowa this weekend, Carrie Kauffman, 22, asked him about the links between hydraulic fracking and water contamination, according to a Texas Tribune story.

“If that was true, it would be on the front page of every newspaper, it would be on ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox News – everybody would be running that story,” Perry said.

Perry, who has been at odds with the Environmental Protection Agency before, said the public was being “hoodwinked by stories that don’t scientifically hold up,” according to The Tribune story.

Last week, the EPA released a report that found hydraulic fracturing fluids and chemicals associated with gas production in deep water wells, marking the first time that contamination has been tied to natural gas drilling.

Since then, critics have attacked the EPA report, claiming it is “scientifically questionable.”

Hydraulic fracturing involves blasting a mix of water, sand and chemicals deep underground and at high pressures to break up dense shale rock and extract oil and natural gas.

For years, the industry has insisted the process is safe, but environmentalists have argued that fracking can cause ground water contamination, air pollution or earthquakes.

But Perry said those allegations haven’t been scientifically proven.

“Bring me the evidence, and once we do that, you show it to me, and I’ll be the first to say you’ve got a point,” he said.

The Texas governor is no stranger to the hydraulic fracturing process, or to fights with the EPA. Perry used some of the same talking points that experts and natural gas drillers used last week after the report came out.

“We have been using hydraulic fracturing in my home state for years,” Perry said, according to an NPR State Impact story. “And this is a fear tactic that the left is using and the environmental community is using that absolutely, excuse the pun, does not hold water.”

6 Comments

  1. TXLIFTR

    If people would understand what is – AND ISN’T – in the EPA report before they start making blanket statements it would be wise. The preliminary report (pending peer review) specifically states that the conditions are relevant to ONLY those Wyoming drilling site in which the well(s) were placed above and within the aquafer recharge zone. It is entirely sensible to see how the groundwater became contaminated in this specific event. It does not have any relevance to the process where the drilling adheres to the guidelines for depth of the well and/or distance from a groundwater recharge zone.

    #1
  2. Trail_Tramp

    You guys are really fond of using the phrase “blasting a mix of water, sand and chemicals”. It’s so much more sensational that saying, “PUMP a mix of water, sand and chemicals.”

    #2
  3. onevois

    do people really think this guys input has much weighting?

    #3
  4. UHH

    Uhhhh chron, ist’n like Perry a lost cause, so you don’t need to like, try to get him elected? anymore

    #4
  5. Robert F.

    Perry demanding studies and evidence when he himself has no studies or evidence to back up his claim. The claim that its been done millions of times without incident is anecdotal too. The EPA exemption for the CWA and the CAA was done on a literature review of data that was 10 to 25 years old in some cases and based on the early type fraccing in vertical wells and lower pressures.

    There have been many lawsuits filed and settled with non disclosure agreements. There’s no record of how many, but it’s enough to know that its how the industry deals with the claims.

    It seems to me that getting these cases in front of a jury and proving them wrong and publishing the results for all to see would be more to the industry’s benefit rather than paying them off and hiding the evidence.

    #5
  6. bg

    Bob F. Anecdotal? The formation failure pressure for artifical fracture propagation is nearly the same given the same formation at the same depth and formation pressure condtions. Geologic anisotropy does come into play with bore hole orientation, but it is likley minimal. So your point about use of older data from vertical wells is in my opinion baseless.

    Since you are so up on rock mechanics I can assume your are an expert follower of Court TV. If there are no record of out of court settlements then why try to make the illogical jump that all damage settlements with the industry follow that path and “hide” the evidence?

    #6