Las Vegas’ Fracking Insanity

The City of Las Vegas, NM has voted to ban the process of “fracking.” I’m not sure how much fracking could or would go on in the City, but it is big news and a big statement. Unfortunately, it is a statement of willful ignorance and dependency by one of the poorest communities in New Mexico.

For starters, fracking or hydraulic fracturing has been around since 1947. It isn’t new. What is new is that it has been used in new and innovative ways to squeeze oil and gas out of the ground. It is why President Obama can take credit for oil and gas production increasing even if he and his Administration opposes them.

Former Gov. Bill Richardson (who else?) decided to allow counties to regulate the oil and gas industry. This was, of course, a highly-political decision. But, with oil and gas generating $358 million annually for schools (not to mention all of the other tax revenues it generates), perhaps local governments that ban oil and gas from their communities should see a reduced allocation for their schools? After all, it is easy to generate opposition by scaring people about fracking if there are no costs (except potential new jobs in the community), but losing money for the schools would ensure that the NIMBY crowd understands that there are trade-offs.

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4 Replies to “Las Vegas’ Fracking Insanity”

  1. Nicely stated. It seems that there is a rush to be the first progressive to sound the greenest. I have to wonder what office these politicians of Las Vegas are dreaming to run for.

  2. The law also seems to target the Las Vegas watershed, according to the article which may reach beyond the city itself. So then, is the thrust of the RGF article that there are absolutely no negative side effects associated with fracking, and that the drilling solutions contain no dangerous chemicals and are harmless as well.
    Or is it just that the positive economic effects appear to outweigh the negative.
    If fracking is harmless and there is no evidence to suggest otherwise what is the motivation to ban it. We of course understand the economic motivation to allow it. And after all, what are the hardships of a poor few compared to having cheap natural gas, which we all, or most of us, obviously benefit from, and money in the pockets of natural gas producers.

  3. Just as the states should be required to live or die based on their decisions, no city should get bailed out by the state when the city wants to commit economic suicide.

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