Sustainability is about ecology, economy and equity.- Ralph Bicknese

Droughts, Fracking, and Being Thankful for Rain

drought.jpg w=620&h=349&crop=1Here in Seattle, complaining about the rain is a cornerstone of small talk (perhaps even the entire base). But with our west coast neighbors in California going through a terrible drought, it’s hard not to feel thankful for the ample amount of wet stuff we get in the Northwest. Not only does rain help to facilitate a healthy ecosystem, it also provides the absolute perfect sound to sleep to, read to, listen to Simon and Garfunkel to, and do just about anything inside to. I’m ready for the cold to go away as much as anyone, but sometimes we should celebrate the fact that our city gets so much of the very thing that keeps greenery green.

In the meantime, fracking opponents in California are seeing the drought as further evidence that oil production needs to take a hint; further work would only suck more water-needed now more than ever-from farms and homes. Fracking uses water in the process of injecting it deep underground to release oil and natural gas by breaking up rock. Even though the government mandated that oil companies report their fracking beginning on Jan. 1st of this year, California environmentalists fear that this will not slow down the practice of it, and are hoping to pass a moratorium on fracking. Personally, I’m hoping it goes through, and the country can continue to drive its focus away from the use of oil and onto sources of energy that don’t involve drilling.

As I write this, I can hear rain pattering down on the skylight close to my desk. While fracking is an environmental concern on levels that go past the use of water, it’s nice to know that Seattle won’t be in need of the rain anytime soon. Hopefully California will be as lucky as we are in this department soon.



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