A federal criminal investigation. A massive, destructive spill. Deliberate pumping of bad stuff into water that people drink.
Is this a description of the current Duke Energy debacle? Or a preview of hydraulic fracking for natural gas in North Carolina?
The Duke mess is a huge – and perhaps fatal – problem for fracking in this state. How can the governor, legislature and regulators can ever assure a skeptical public that fracking will be safe? What rules can they develop to ensure that companies from around the world with sharp drills don’t sacrifice our drinking water in exchange for quick profits?
After all, Duke is a mature, North Carolina-based company that used an accepted storage system for coal ash, one that was governed by plenty of rules and regulations. But one stretch of river will never be the same, Duke’s reputation and bank account will be drained before it’s all over, and political careers will suffer collateral damage.
We’ve seen the future, and it looks totally fracked up.