Houston Matters

Does Fracking Really Contaminate Drinking Water?

Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, has been a boom for Texas oil and gas companies. The process of pumping a mixture of water and chemicals into the ground to break up shale allows oil and gas to flow to the surface. There are some who question fracking’s impact on the environment and surrounding communities. One of […]

Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, has been a boom for Texas oil and gas companies. The process of pumping a mixture of water and chemicals into the ground to break up shale allows oil and gas to flow to the surface.

There are some who question fracking's impact on the environment and surrounding communities. One of the concerns opponents of the shale gas industry have raised is that the process can contaminate drinking water.

However, a new study is casting doubt on that claim — arguing that a number of cases of water contamination near fracking sites were most likely caused by leaky gas wells — not fracking itself. Still, other environmental concerns surrounding the process remain.

Houston Public Media’s energy and environment reporter Dave Fehling joins us to discuss the study and the fracking process.

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Michael Hagerty

Michael Hagerty

Senior Producer, Houston Matters

Michael Hagerty is the senior producer for Houston Matters. He's spent more than 20 years in public radio and television and dabbled in minor league baseball, spending four seasons as the public address announcer for the Reno Aces, the Triple-A affiliate of the Arizona Diamondbacks.

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