Germany may ban fracking over environmental concerns

Germany may ban fracking over environmental concerns by, February 18, 2013
Germany could join other European countries and ban the fracking method of shale gas extraction, according to Germany’s Environment Minister Peter Altmaier. Altmaier says he wants a ban on fracking in all areas where drinking water is protected, noting that a fracking ban is nothing to be afraid of if it is recommended by some scientific research, Welt am Sonntag reports. As the research hasn’t been completed, it’s too early to put a veto on this natural gas extraction technology, the politician stressed. Altmaier said he would like to introduce legislation on fracking by September, Reuters reports. … The practice was temporarily suspended in the United Kingdom after it was linked to a series of earth tremors. It has also been banned for environmental reasons in Bulgaria and France which are estimated to have Europe’s largest reserves of shale gas. Other countries are considering outlawing the method too. Hydraulic fracturing has raised environmental concerns around the world including Denmark, the Netherlands, Ireland, New Zealand, and Australia. In Canada it was temporarily suspended in the Quebec province, pending an environmental review. In the US fracking has been prohibited in the State of Vermont. Environment Minister Altmaier says a new law is being prepared that could prohibit shale gas extraction in areas with natural supplies of drinking water. According to his words, other areas of the country will also be checked for possible effects of fracking on the environment. The biggest danger that can arise from this practice concerns the use of special chemical liquids to create the pressure, underground vibration and strong noise that accompanies the process, says the Minister.

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