Andrew Kreighbaum came out with quite a lengthy article on the area's continuing fracking boom and it's long-term impact on our state's water supply. Simply said, one thing is sure. There is definitely a question about whether the state has enough water to sustain a long-term fracking boom. An utter lack of regulation , transparency coupled with the reluctance of the industry in cooperating with water conservation groups and environmentally-concerned citizens paints a very worrisome picture for anyone who is willing to take an objective view of the "big picture" in regards to the Eagle Ford Shale". Kreighbaum's article states, in part:
Jean-Phillipe Nicot, a research scientist at the Bureau of Economic Geology at the University of Texas, has made forecasts for water use by industry in the next 50 years for the water development board.
“Since it’s a shale, a kind of very fine rock, there is no way you can get the gas and oil out unless you promote the permeability,” he said. Drillers do that, he said, by fracking the wells with water.
He said less water-intensive fracking processes have been developed — fracking with foam for example. But those processes are also more expensive.“When water is readily available, why go [out of your way]?” he said.
While he said the Carrizo-Wilcox aquifer can deliver a lot of water, Nicot said nobody has studied carefully what the impact of fracking will be on the aquifer.Even if the Carrizo-Wilcox can handle the increased demand overall, traditional users may see a strain on resources at the local level.