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Fracking Blackpool

February 2012

A quest for new gas reserves made headlines when the drilling operation triggered small earthquakes close to Blackpool in 2011

A quest for new gas reserves made headlines when the drilling operation triggered small earthquakes close to Blackpool in 2011. The findings of an inquiry uncovered "strong evidence" that two minor quakes and 48 weaker seismic events resulted from the injection of drilling fluid into shale rocks.

This case study also examines a wider set of physical impacts caused by shale gas exploration. In particular, controversy surrounds the techniques used to recover gas from shale-rock formations using a technique called hydraulic fracturing - or "fracking".

Campaigns have been mounted against the environmental costs of fracking- and now earthquakes can be added to the list of concerns!

We also examine how energy security concerns are leading to increased global use of unconventional fossil fuels such as shale gas.

In the Members' Area:

  • What caused the Blackpool earthquake?
  • What are the causes and consequences of the global quest for shale gas?
  • A-level student exercises
  • References

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