SHALE GAS EXTRACTION AND WATER CONSUMPTION IN NORTH CAROLINA: A PRIMER
Manoj K. Jha and Daniel G. Fernandez
DOI : 10.3844/ajeassp.2014.165.170
American Journal of Engineering and Applied Sciences
Volume 7, Issue 1
About 25,000 acres of area underlying the Deep and Dan River Basins in North Carolina has been identified to contain large shale gas reservoirs that could be used for the natural gas production. This study attempted to quantify the impact of potential hydraulic fracturing (or fracking) activities in the existing water resources of North Carolina. Supply and demand analysis was conducted using a water balance approach. Availability of surface water resources was quantified using the streamflow monitoring data of the surrounding area. A general assessment of the water demand for fracking was done using existing literature data and assumptions. Finally, a comparison was made between the water demand due to fracking and the water availability from nearby water sources. The preliminary analysis concluded that the surface water resources of North Caroline will not be affected at all as far as water quantity is concerned. However, whether extracting the shale gas of North Carolina is a good decision or not depends on the complete evaluation of the shale reservoirs and how well environmental impacts can be addressed.
© 2014 Manoj K. Jha and Daniel G. Fernandez. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.