Environmental and Health Concerns

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Credit: BC by John Hart Studios (www.johnhartstudios.com)

While hydraulic fracturing can provide sources of natural gas, it has several negative consequences for the environment and human health. This section first puts natural gas pollution into context by comparing it to other fossil fuels. The following sections outline the human risks, the repercussions of water pollution, the habitat destruction associated with hydraulic fracturing, and the on-site pollution caused by wells.

Although natural gas may be a cleaner alternative to other fossil fuels, the environmental impacts of hydraulic fracturing should be considered before future drilling. It is also important for the U.S. to reduce its overall consumption of fossil fuels and make a more serious transition to renewable energy.