Three Times as Many Americans Want More Fracking Oversight Than Less

Chris Waits via Flickr/CC BY 2.0

Nobody likes fracking, except perhaps energy companies. And even they probably didn't anticipate the headache the procedure, which blasts a toxic cocktail of undisclosed chemicals into the earth, would cause them. Far from the sole provenance of liberals (despite the efforts of that dreadlocked guy handing out 'No Fracking' buttons on the subway to convince us otherwise), fracking has angered water-drinkers across the political spectrum, across the nation. The industry's opaqueness and aggression has, in other words, pissed everyone off in bipartisan measure.

A new Bloomberg poll shows Americans overwhelmingly support more transparency and regulation for fracking—only 18% want less oversight, while 65% believe there should be stricter rules.

Here's Bloomberg:

More than three times as many Americans say there should be more regulation of fracturing, known as fracking, than less, according to a Bloomberg News National Poll conducted March 8-11. The findings coincide with recent surveys in Ohio and New York where people who believe fracking will cause environmental damage outnumber those who say the process is safe.

The NRDC's Amy Mall notes that the finding "doesn't come as any surprise."

"Americans along the ideological spectrum are calling for new rules for oil and gas production, including fracking," Mall writes. "Not only are the environmental threats expanding near homes and schools, but the rules on the books are extremely outdated and enforcement is too weak. When you visit communities where oil and gas production is taking place, people of all stripes are outraged by the special treatment granted to the oil and gas industry."

There are a lot of controversial issues that factor into fracking debates—land rights, groundwater contamination, greenhouse gas emissions, etc. But the one thing that just about everyone who doesn't work directly or indirectly for the fossil fuels industry (and who doesn't swallow Fox News tripe at face-value) can agree upon is that companies should, you know, disclose what the hell they're fracking with. We, the public, should have a right to know what's being blasted into our backyards, our leased public lands. And the stuff should be subject to oversight that prevents harmful activity.

Pretty straightforward stuff, no?

Tags: Fracking | United States