Natural Gas' Frack Problem
Yesterday the New York State Assembly approved a six-month ban on natural gas drilling that uses hydraulic fracturing until the environmental impact of this process is evaluated. The fear is that the chemicals used in fracking are seeping into and contaminating ground water supplies. Fracking is the high pressure process used with water and chemicals to force the release of hydrocarbons from rock formations deep in the earth. Many natural gas drillers use fracking and many don't reclaim the water / chemical cocktail, allowing it to dissipate into the earth. Articles on natural gas fracking and the NY Assembly vote are here and here. I am going to go out on a limb here and say that the environmental impact of fracking is a big deal, and that most gas drilling investments I have reviewed are under insured against environmental damage.