Fracking raises environmental concerns

Fracking raises environmental concerns

There's growing concern in the Beauregard and Vernon Parish areas concerning a form of gas recovery known as "fracking."

Fracking it sounds like a swear word, but it's a controversial energy exploration technique that's causing growing concern in south west Louisiana.  The issue has come up as various residents in the Bundick Lake area  have been approached by seismic companies seeking to lease land for mineral rights.

Bundick Lake is a peaceful if not serene community where one can get away from the hustle and bustle of city life.  But many who own property here have been approached recently by seismic companies seeking permission to survey the land to get information about what the geology is below.

The increasing interest in exploration is of great concern to Bonnie McElroy due to a production technique known as fracking.

"Untold horrors for many communities in Wyoming, in Colorado, in Northeast, in Pennsylvania, whole towns have just literally been totally demolished.  They've lost their water system.  Some places have to bring in their drinking water.  Their water is so bad it's brown when it comes out of the tap," McElroy said.

McElroy says her research indicates more and more communities have banned fracking due to its potential for depleting water supplies and pollution.

"In some places there's so much methane in it they can light their kitchen sink water on fire.  Now that's dangerous.  Houses have blown up," McElroy said.

Micah Pruitt recently graduated from college with a degree in forestry.  He hopes people will educate themselves about fracking before it's too late.

"I believe there needs to be more regulation.  The people need to know what's at risk.  Twenty-five years down the road are we still going to be dealing with this issue. Fishermen need to be concerned; tourism needs to be concerned," Pruitt said.

She believes no promise of jobs or economic success is worth the risk of losing clean and plentiful water for the future.

McElroy made a presentation last night to the Vernon Police Jury and is making one at this hour to the Beauregard jury.

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