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Fracking is an extractive method that started to be implemented in the US over a decade ago to exploit hydrocarbons contained in unconventional deposits. What used to be non-profitable to exploit, could become profitable due to the application of a new extraction method. But there is evidence that the use of this technology has had serious consequences on the health of the population, the quality of water in aquifers, ecosystem balance and the life of the surrounding fauna.
In the US, there is already evidence of pollution in superficial and underground aquifers, and the aquifers of the North-East region, where Marcellus Shale, the largest unconventional gas deposit, is located are showing signs of pollution. Polluted water which cannot be drank, earthquakes, explosions, an increase of tumor incidence and cattle that that is found dead next to the wells are consequences of fracking.
In view of the potential risks of this technology, in different countries where oil companies have submitted projects for unconventional hydrocarbon exploration and production there have been conflicts and resistance by the communities inhabiting the territories that have or are suspected to have deposits.
An example of success of the local resistance against fracking is the Australian State of Victoria. There, Premier Daniel Andrews recently established a permanent ban on fracking, turning Victoria into the first state in the country to achieve it. Real World Radio spoke with Chloe Aldenhoven, coordinator of the Lock the Gate Alliance against unsafe mining and promoter of the campaign against coal and gas at organization Quit Coal. Chloe told us about the problems experienced in Victoria which prompted the social resistance, the development model chosen by the citizens and supported by the government and how they managed to achieve this ban.
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