Another Million or Two

That’s how many additional shale gas drilling wells are predicted to be included in the “all of the above” energy menu of our President and the Virginia Governor.

Add up what that means to your children’s future. Do the accounting of debits and credits with regard to another 30 years or carbon fuels from “unconventional” sources, now that we’ve blown our way through all the easy carbon.

Calculate the number of hundreds of millions of gallons of potable water that will be sucked out of our groundwater, lakes and rivers–water and turned to fracking fluid–water that can never be used again for human consumption or for watering crops or livestock.

► Shale Drilling Destroys Regional Water Resources

Tally the thousands of miles of additional land despoiled by pipelines like the Atlantic Coast and its evil twin, the Mountain Valley  proposed to cross Floyd County.

And on that land, add up the total of devalued property (homes, schools, businesses, wetlands, hiking trails, scenic highways); the acres of altered, deforested, herbicide-sprayed personal places forever;  the  immeasurable loss to visitors and natives alike of the beauty, tranquility and wholeness of precious places defiled.


Calculate the metric tons of additional carbon (CO2 and MUCH more methane than previously admitted from wellhead leaks) and the degrees of atmospheric temperature increase, the number of inches of sea level rise, the number of species of birds, salamanders and as-yet-unnamed creatures that will disappear into extinction because they cannot adapt as quickly as our planet is being changed by human choice at the highest levels–not at the grassroots.

Our future is being stolen by our politicians and their corporate handlers—clearly against the will of the people who have the clarity of vision to see that the “cheap, clean and abundant” alternative of shale gas is a lie, pure and simple.

[su_youtube url=””]

Share this with your friends!

Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

Articles: 3013

One comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.