Develop energy from shale with local ecosystems in mind

Casparus J. Crous
2015 South African Journal of Science  
In South Africa, there currently are plans to develop shale-based gas extraction in arid and semi-arid landscapes of the Karoo. The extraction of gas from shale in the Karoo through hydraulic fracturing, also known as 'fracking', remains a contentious issue, with stakeholders often criticised for not being forthright in their reporting of the possible risks to local water resources. 1 Indeed, what I find the most striking among all the debate and polemical essays is how very few scientific
more » ... ts there are on the possible local effects of fracking on the native Karoo biota. A recent review underscored this shortfall in hydraulic fracturing development globally. 2 The authors concluded that energy development from shale gas often suffers from being ambiguous and incomprehensive across space: far too few peer-reviewed research papers particularly address the impact that fracking might have on the biotic elements in the landscape. This review therefore addresses the much-needed emphasis on including biodiversity conservation in assessing a fracking-targeted landscape.
doi:10.17159/sajs.2015/a0101 fatcat:rolmduoqxrhq5eduktkro5sbbe