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LETTERS: Fracking poses environmental, health threats

To the editor:

Simon Lomax’s preposterous commentary in favor of fracking in Nevada accuses the Center for Biological Diversity of not using science in the dispute against hydraulic fracturing (“Science no concern of Center for Biological Diversity,” July 7 Review-Journal). Ironically, Mr. Lomax — the director of an industry advocacy group — doesn’t use science in his attack on an environmental organization that is fighting for the safety of our drinking water.

However, you don’t need to be a scientist to know that fracking is a horrible idea for Nevada; common sense will do quite nicely. For instance, a fracking well uses millions of gallons of water. Does that sound like a good thing for Nevada, where water is such a precious resource? One can also use the power of observation to know fracking will destroy the environment. Fracking water is mixed with toxic chemicals. There are many videos available that show residents near fracking wells lighting their tap water on fire. You don’t need to be a scientist to know that flammable drinking water is not a good thing.

Perhaps the most outrageous argument from Mr. Lomax is that California Gov. Jerry Brown (decidedly not a scientist) is pro-fracking. Hey, he used to be someone who protected the environment — if he’s for fracking, it must be good, right? The truth is that Gov. Brown is just another disappointing politician who takes contributions from energy companies and sells out the people for special interests.

Perhaps Mr. Lomax is unaware that more than 20 top climate scientists sent a letter to Gov. Brown calling for a ban of fracking because shale gas development via fracking threatens California with pollution from toxic and carcinogenic chemicals. Those signing the letter included Ken Caldeira with the Department of Global Ecology at the Carnegie Institution for Science. In reality, scientists are concerned about fracking, and we should be too.



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