everything you always wanted to know about fracking (but were too afraid to ask)

Jessica Ernst, M.Sc. is a 55 year old Canadian environmental scientist with 30 years oil and gas industry experience. She is currently suing the Alberta government, Alberta energy regulator, the Energy Resources Conservation Board (ERCB), and EnCana for negligence and unlawful activities related to hydraulic fracturing. Click here to read more about the lawsuit.

Ernst’s statement of claim alleges that EnCana broke multiple provincial laws and regulations and contaminated a shallow aquifer that supplied drinking water to the Rosebud community with natural gas and toxic industry-related chemicals.

In March of this year, she gave a series of presentations (uploaded on youtube) about the potential impact of hydraulic fracturing, or “Fracking” across Ireland and the United Kingdom, which included talks in Lancashire (where test drilling began in Britain) and also Balcombe, Sussex. In these presentations she outlined her own case and explained more generally why she believes no healthy society should ever permit hydraulic fracturing.

In 2010, she was awarded the “Woman of Courage” award by UNANIMA International, a UN Economic and Social Council accredited NGO, for her efforts to hold companies accountable for environmental harm done by “fracking”.

I have embedded below a presentation she gave in America in 2012:


The industry claims that “with a history of 60 years, after nearly a million wells drilled, there are no documented cases that hydraulic fracturing has lead to the contamination of water”. A statement which involves not one lie, but two.

Unearthed: The Fracking Facade is a short documentary film that sets the record straight by explaining how the hydraulic fracturing process has changed (with current practices having little more than a decade-long history) and how the industry has covered up its poor record of polluting by means of intimidation, plausible deniability and the widespread use of non-disclosure agreements, which force victims to remain silent in return for guarantees of support either in the form of clean water deliveries, relocation, or financial compensation:


Filed under analysis & opinion, Canada, fracking (shale & coal seam gas)

4 responses to “everything you always wanted to know about fracking (but were too afraid to ask)

  1. darren

    according to one of the claims in the court filing, it suggests that it is possible to say exactly which fracking drilling site has polluted what groundwater/land, with each site having, if you will, something similar to a DNA fingerprint.
    No wonder the UK is trying the same trick as the USA in banning the environmental agencies from checking whether water has been contaminated. The evidence, it seems, would stand out like a sore thumb!


  2. Just so you know, James, I’m stealing this, too . . . 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: everything you always wanted to know about fracking (but were too afraid to ask) — James Boswell | wall of controversy | Taking Sides

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