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Tuesday, 20 August 2013

Frack it yourself

The peace of the Sussex countryside was shattered again yesterday by battles between police and protestors, the latter objecting to the aims of a certain business to make huge profits from 'fracking', the process by which fuel gas may be liberated from deep in the earth by the injection of water under immense pressure.
I can see both sides of the argument.
On the one hand, the gas is there for the taking, the world is running short of it, money can be made from liberating it, and man has the ingenuity and drive to conquer the obstacles to such liberation.
On the other hand, why should one company make all the money while the rest of us have to put up with earthquakes, flames from the taps, stunted rhubarb, and all the other side effects?
To a person such as myself, with the detached perspective of the scientist, the instincts of the entrepreneur, and the problem-solving capabilities of the... the.., well with good problem solving capabilities, the answer is clear. FIY, or frack it yourself. Why not? If the job is done on a small scale the technical challenges are not that great, and certainly not beyond your average British handyman.[Used metaphorically to include handywoman - Ed.]

Perhaps the most risky aspect of the work is the initial seismological study to determine whether the gas is present in sufficient abundance to warrant the frack, since it is an entirely speculative exercise, and your are unlikely to be able to take the bits of your DIY seismograph back to Maplins for a refund.

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